Wednesday, March 09, 2011

Jack White is up to stuff

My childhood, several centuries ago, was enlivened with stories of English rock bands and their touring vans, which were cramped and unheated and full of battered cheap gear that musicians these days would give an arm and a leg to obtain - and how often these beat groups got sick on the road, and how often the bands got laid in the back of those vans. Paul Kossoff, the druggiest of Free, was the best driver in that group and would cheerfully drive the length of Great Britain without a protest or a problem. Jimmy Page, touring with a combo of now-mostly-forgotten rockers in a van, famously got sick from Glandular Fever (Mono, in US-speak) and retired from touring forever at the ripe old age of 19 (or something), vowing to spend the future as a session musician. (I believe he went back to touring with some group or other later, when he preferred charter jets with fur-topped beds in the cabin.) The rivalry between those groups who preferred the Bedford van and those groups who preferred the legendary Transit van is the stuff of sagas.

So now Jack has translated the full musical van-experience from live music to vinyl, transferring the romance of the touring troubadours of rock to the staff of the record store. Four or fewer Lovable Moptops (Ben Swank) will soon arrive at our doorsteps to personally provide us with sounds at whatever cost to their selves, their relationships and their health.

One hopes Jack has taken to heart the tales of all those English boys tested - and so many of whom were broken - by the stress of having to get to Bradford St. George's Hall by 1 pm next day after the Hammersmith Odeon gig last night, in the freezing fog with the top two gears f*cked and the brakes a bit slushy and a slapper in the back seat who's forgotten her shoes. If not, we'll no doubt hear these epic tales of struggle and victory from Third Man in their tweets and web-updates.

Actual footage of a fictional group race between a Bedford and a Transit. You don't want to know the movie it comes from.

Also, the first person to glom/glue/clamp/magnet a GPS on the underside of this sucker at SXSW and tell us where it's headed in future will win my undying appreciation.


Mike said...

This video has been removed by the user.
Missing key explanatory dialogue.

So the record store delivers records to your door, to prevent them being used as frisbees by the mailman? Now, that would be useful.

More interesting was the prospect of a young Lemmy appearing in Groupie Girl.

Peromyscus said...

Okay, I found another copy. Let's hope they don't remove this one.

Lemmy was in Groupie Girl? I don't remember him and he's not in the IMDB credits.


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