God only knows why Beatles engineer Norman Smith, who also produced such top notch UK acts as The Pretty Things and Pink Floyd, decided to step out from behind the mixing board one fateful day in 1972 and re-invent himself as "pop star" Hurricane Smith. Why Lord?
This is the guy that turned the knobs on total classics like S.F. Sorrow and The Piper at Gates of Dawn fer Christsake! What I'm saying is, HE SHOULD HAVE KNOWN BETTER! This horrible song absolutely haunted me throughout my childhood... I mean, it was everywhere, and looking back, I bet that no one was more surprised that it became a huge international hit than old Norman himself. Interestingly enough, the best and worst things I will ever post were recorded within a year of each other. It just goes to show what a totally haphazard and arbitrary time the early 70’s actually were. No wonder the muscle car died out and Detroit was never the same… can you blame it?
It pains me to post this, but if we've learned anything from Newton, it's that "for every action, there is an equal and opposite reaction" so if I posted that genius and long lost Sparks footage, I simply have to post this... sorry, but I can't break the third law of motion, not even for this blog!
Look, I’ll be the first one to admit that I am prone to exaggeration. For some, it is a part of my “charm” and for others it’s a minor annoyance they put up. But I assure you that I’m not exaggerating in the slightest when I say that this is the greatest thing I will ever post. Why? Let’s start with the fact that I first saw this clip THIRTY FOUR YEARS AGO on the long forgotten late night ABC TV show In Concert, and it’s not a stretch to say that it totally changed my life. I only saw it once, but it set off a life long… shall we say “obsession” with the band Sparks that continues to this day.
Before seeing this, I never knew that rock and roll could be so clever, both ingenious and totally ass-kicking at the same time. Even among the slew of so-called “glam rock” bands that Ron, Russell and the boys were inevitably lumped in with, they were entirely unique, and I don’t think that’s ever been better illustrated than in this footage. Clearly they had fans in high places, besides the mob of screaming teens, you see none other than Keith Moon and Ringo Starr teaming up to introduce them. In all seriousness, I remember this clip like I saw it only yesterday; no other musical performance ever made such an impact on me. Do yourself a favor and stick with it until the end, because after they do “Something for the Girl with Everything” they break into a killer version of “Talent is an Asset” that still has me jumping around like I did when I was nine years old. Enjoy.
Did you ever wonder what goes on at an NBA playoff game during a TV time out? Well, since your boy MLV was there and my trusty Casio Exilim digital camera can make short Quicktime movies, I thought I'd share... cover your ears!