The Birth of Rock and Roll : Photographs from the collection of Jim Linderman plus a conversation with Joe Bonomo
The Birth of Rock and Roll is now available for pre-ordering on Amazon. I received a copy and it turned out beautiful. A coffee table book, and a book about music unlike any you have seen.
My vintage photographs were handled beautifully by the fine folks at the publisher DUST-TO-DIGITAL and the design by award-winning Martin Venezky and his Appetite Engineers shop is fantastic. Historian, essayist and music-writer Joe Bonomo contributes elegant prose.
160 pages and when they are laid open, each is 19" x 12" of striking jumping' and jivin' humanity! I am proud indeed to make a contribution to our understanding of that phenomena we call Rock and Roll, and the folks mentioned above helped it happen.
There will be more about the book soon, but for now it is listed in the art book D.A.P. Catalog (shown here) and Amazon is taking pre-orders. It will soon be available at the Dust-to-Digital Website and other sources.
It may be worth mentioning that my first book with Dust to Digital, Take Me to the Water (which was Grammy-nominated) is now out of print and used copies are trading for over a hundred dollars…
I would like to thank the publisher Stephen Lance Ledbetter for recognizing the potential of this project, and for the magnificent results. A picture does tell a thousand words, and in this case the pictures tell a hundred year story like never before. Thank you!
My annual "I'm not at the Outsider Art Fair" series continues, here with works depicting famous residences by British eccentric and cypher Basil Merritt circa 1950. I'd be there if I could, but I hate to fly.
A few other posts in my unstructured and informal Outsider Art series are shown HERE and HERE and HERE and HERE and HERE More or less. Additional works by Basil Merrett are HERE.
Lavin Burcham, the boy who had oil poured on his hands (olive oil…so says the bible) leads off our tribute here to miniature mouths for the Lord! Boy Preachers are cool…it keeps them from being bad at least until they grow up. Whenever you hear a talking head on Fox rail against "Your Al Sharptons…" that's what they are talking about. Boy Preachers!
All these boy preachers have been profiled on the Old Time Religion Blog (which you should follow) except for Reverend Al. Do you know why Fox hates Al Sharpton? Because other than the Brawley incident, he is usually right. (Except when he worked as an agent for the FBI….It's complicated. It will make for a good book!) I hope he runs for president again. He will keep Hillary honest and give her a foil.
ALL ORIGINAL PHOTOGRAPHS COLLECTION JIM LINDERMAN (Except for boy wonder Al Sharpton. That comes from his new autobiography shown here and available here.
At the turn of the century, thousands of young girls without the benefit of child labor laws traveled and performed nightly in the vaudeville and burlesque theaters of America. Photographer Frank Wendt took their photographs. They appear in the book HOOFERS AND SWEETHEARTS: THE LITTLE WOMEN OF FRANK WENDT.
Undisputedly the Undisputed Truth? Norman Whitfield and the Undisputed Truth White Afro Promotional Photograph
Hey! It's Taka Boom, Chaka Khan's sister. Hard to tell with all the make-up. Strategic placement of disco ball helps identify the musical genre…you are going to put on platform shoes, wait in line to get in and possibly do some blow. Or should I say undisputedly.
The Undisputed Truth was brainchild/nightmare created by Norman Whitfield, a strong R&B composer who seems to have made a major mistake here. Norman wrote "I Heard it Through the Grapevine" and "War" (Oooof! Absolutely NOTHING! Say it Again!) He also wrote "Ain't Too Proud to Beg" "Just My Imagination" and "Papa Was a Rolling Stone". So we are talking money here…big time top of the line songwriter for the ages money.
Whitfield was born in Harlem, but moved to the Motor City where he was soon writing songs for Motown. Blinded by success (or SOMETHING?) Whitfield moved to LA when Motown abandoned Detroit In 1973…and his first band was the nightmare above. They followed him from Detroit too… He still wrote hits, including "Car Wash" which you are humming now.
The Undisputed Truth lasted 8 years or so, with numerous members. Taka Boom's Fan Page is HERE. Can you Dig it? Well Dig THIS, it's the Undisputed Truth doing Whitfield's "Smiling Faces" I'm smiling.
Promotional Photograph (No Date) Collection Jim Linderman
Vintage Ventriloquist Dummy Vent Figure Mid-20th Century Clay and wood with wire mechanism, handmade. Eyes, mouth and arms move. 36" long. See also the book I'M WITH DUMMY available HERE in paperback and hardcover.
Wonder House by Conrad Schuck is For Sale in Florida Vernacular Architecture Outsider Art Folk Art Environment
Would anyone like to purchase a WONDER HOUSE? Conrad Schuck's Wonder House in Florida is available, and you can get "outsider" art at an "insider" price! Real Estate Listing is HERE. Dull Tool Dim Bulb Previous Post on the Wonder House is HERE
Spauldeen Pinky Stickball Hell's Kitchen Memories and a set of Handmade Puppets 10th Avenue and 46th Street
In 1981 I moved to one of the most ethnically diverse neighborhoods in the world. Hell's Kitchen, Manhattan. It is still diverse, but not like it was. At the time, my neighbors were 10 percent everything (White, Black, Gay, Straight, Sober, Drunk, Actor, Actress, Irish, Puerto Rican…There were ten apartments in my rent-controlled walk up and it was a mini-United Nations.) It was a neighborhood lost in time. Only Hell's Kitchen could manage to be isolated a mere 4 blocks from Times Square, but it was. Too dingy for tourists and not particularly safe. But yes, as late as 1981 there were old neighborhoods left in Manhattan with families of 5 children living in railroad apartments. My neighborhood was a treasure. Two blocks from the Hudson River and no building taller than 6 stories…and regulated as such. Hell's Kitchen was working class and it had big sky. I had four rooms and rock-bottom rock-solid rent control. I stayed 30 years.
It was no less than a day before I saw my first stick ball game out of the third floor window and I knew I belonged. Two of the first "New York" phrases I learned were "Pinky" and "Spauldeen." Both referred to the one dollar pink rubber ball used for the primitive baseball game which entertained decades of New York youth. The slap of a stick against a spauldeen was always followed by shouts of kids I would soon recognize and know by name. I will never forget the first time I heard someone yell "Go get a Pinky" and someone would run to the Deli and return with a fresh one. The Arabs who ran the deli kept a box of them near the door, and I honestly do not think they worried too much if one or two got lost. Their kids played too, and to get them out of the store was great. Everyone liked stickball. It was a way of claiming the street, the community, the asphalt. Girls practiced dance steps and marked the score with chalk.
Most stickball games were played in-between blowing horns. Drivers didn't really mind too much, and knew when the play finished they would be waved through...a waiting car beeping a horn was part of the charm. Hired cab drivers had to at least go through the motions, but for outsiders, the pure charm of stickball relaxed the stiffest businessperson. Relax, sit back, watch a play. It allowed young men to shout back grabbing their crotch like their older brothers had. "The HORN blows, does the DRIVER?"
A few years after I moved to Hell's Kitchen, Crack cocaine was invented. It was a tornado. I watched it take youngster after youngster from my block…A complete horror. Soon the cycle of detention, relapse, and prison all but robbed the entire team. Good Kids I had come to love, kids who worked two jobs, kids I could trust to hold my door for me or walk my dog or hold a parking space when I rented a car…Tommy, Luke, Lance, I would see them mere shells, pock-marked, lifeless…the ball players all were missing, then missing for good. Soon there were no kids…The streets were quiet. A few families managed to stay together and get away. Others dropped before my eyes, mothers and fathers unable to deal with the onslaught. Good working families who laughed and watched and welcomed me turned inward in grief.
This set of Homemade puppets all have heads made out of Spauldeen Pinkies. Some have a cotton covering with hand drawn features, others, presumably those in a little better shape, have faces drawn directly on the rubber. While girls certainly were allowed to play stickball, and some very, very well indeed, I am still glad some of them found another use for some when the rubber lost some form.
I would like to thank the person who sent me this wonderful set of round rubber memories.
Set of Make-Do Puppets with Spauldeen Heads. No Date. Likely 1960s? Collection Jim Linderman
Vintage Handmade Folk Art Fishing Tackle Box, Two-sided with with original paint and Hand-painted Lures. Prince Albert tin handle. Signed "JOE" likely of Michigan origin.
Collection Jim Linderman Dull Tool Dim Bulb