Sunday, February 28, 2010

"Just Like Paradise" -- a music video retrospective

It amazes me that I haven't yet written about the exploits of Diamond Dave. A real icon of 1980s rock music. He was in his element 25 years ago. Roth was ultra-excessive, super suave and he didn't even know how to play guitar. He had six pack abs, and yet he drank excessively. He knew how to give an epic interview. Women loved him. He became too big for an already-big band (they started to use keyboards*).

Crazy from the Heat showed MTV he could go solo, with the legendary videos of "California Girls" and "Just a Gigalo/I Ain't Got Nobody" (both by Pete Angelus, a Van Halen artistic guru). Other great videos followed (I'd bet you've never heard or seen "Goin' Crazy!"). Skyscraper came out in early 1988, and I seriously have the "Just Like Paradise" music video burned into my childhood.

David Lee had his pick of the litter for a backing band, and I bet dudes were clamoring to get in on the action. In 1988, "Team Stud" was Steve Vai, Gregg Bissonette and Billy Sheehan (actually Matt Bissonette in the video). I think Brett Tuggle was on keyboards*, too. All-star, all-glam. Steve Vai is best known as a masturbatory shredder, and for outlandish guitar designs. Gregg, for his surfer mullet.

Saturday, February 13, 2010

"Do the Evolution" -- a music video retrospective

"Twenty-ten, watch it go to fire!"

Yield is my favorite album of 1998. I remember exactly where I was when "Given to Fly" came on the local college radio station. I remember reading the album review in Rolling Stone. I remember staring at the packaging and the art, looking for all the hidden Yield signs. It was a great time to love Pearl Jam.

Todd MacFarlane was white-hot at this same time, coming off a Korn album cover job and--of course--the Spawn comic character. MacFarlane was given the task to do the first music video from Pearl Jam in almost exactly six years. He had the burden to follow-up the phenomenon called "Jeremy" (that put Pearl Jam on the MTV Map all those years ago). But, Todd did it. It's history. It's superb.