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    Posted: April 30 2012 at 18:17
Thought some of y'all might enjoy this blog post:  

IS THERE ANY WORTHWHILE PROGRESSIVE THING? YES


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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Dean Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: May 01 2012 at 14:09
Thumbs Up Direct link to the audio lecture: http://web.me.com/bradleybirzer/The_Birzers/Prog_Lecture.html 


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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote moshkito Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: May 02 2012 at 08:53
Originally posted by krishl krishl wrote:

Thought some of y'all might enjoy this blog post:  

IS THERE ANY WORTHWHILE PROGRESSIVE THING? YES


 
The first article is ok, funny ... but it says nothing! I will listen to the lecture when I get home.
 
My perspective is California ... not the music they mention, btw! Which I tend to think is a problem for the real definition and dedication to a lot of this music.
 
Interesting to see some things mentioned in the synapsis that I have also said. I have not used Dave Brubeck, and most of my comments were steered towards the DVD about Tom Dowd ... and Dean, you have GOT to see that ... as it has a fabulous history of music in America from an engineer's perspective ... not a fan, or musician! His examples and work suggested that a lot more of this music developed from the free form black music ... which went on to come up with things like Miles Davis in its somewhat more extreme form ... however ... we tend to look at that as highly individual/personal work, and sometimes it has a tendency to not be thought of as important ... but I believe it was a logical extension of that period ... though I believe that Tom wanted to suggest that there was much more in there than we ever heard!
 
Dave Brubeck, for my tastes, was the blend that was jazz'ier in music style that was closer to the ear, when compared to film music and classical music. It was much easier to pick up and also had some beat and cute hooks for you to get attached to, which was very much within the frame of "popular" and "film" music of the day! I think that some of it even fits the "Easy Listening" label like Glen Miller and such!
 
As to worthwhile? ... we had these things in Santa Barbara, we were playing it at home, my roomie was running rampant with these things on the radio (Blobfish, btw!), and it was not a "big deal" per se ... but it was not the "top ten" and it was NOT what most of the girls called the station for when they wanted to get laid or picked up (so to speak!), and/or get freebies from the station! In the first of our apartments together, I had Thick as a Brick, Yes Album, Close to the Edge, Led Z 2 and 3, Pink Floyd ATM and Ummaguma. And it was a bit later, by accident, that we found Edgar Broughton Band, Kevin Ayers, Roy Harper and the like which led us to follow the Harvest label in its entirety for years to come.
 
That's not to say, that Guy was not already aware of some of these things. I believe he was -- as he was from LA and probably had heard some of these things before in these stations! -- or he would not have taken to them so easily ... and above all ... have an inate understanding for the music, which the majority of radio disk jockeys and personalities, rarely have, as they are simply playing "the dots" , or the what the Billboard (or Top of the Pops) wants "you to hear" ...  which to me, helps clarify and makes you realize what an important "fight" we all had to get this music appreciated!
 
But it was selling! Probably not as much as Earth Wind and Fire, or Michael Jackson, or Led Zeppelin, or The Who, or Rolling Stones that dominated the airwaves at KTYD and LA.
 
The hard part for KTYD, being 90 minutes from downtown LA (then ... more like a 3 hour fall asleep and get tired drive now!), meant that we picked up KLOS and KMET and KPFK ... and these stations had a massive reach -- almost half of California, and their pull and strength of what sold was usually major ... but you knew that there were people at KMET and KLOS that wanted to play different things, and they were not happy that they were not allowed to play enough of it ... Jim Ladd has that story ... which is also told in Radio Kaos very clearly and down to the last details of bs and corruption and everything else you can think of. You can almost guess who wanted to play King Crimson, and probably couldn't because they were not blue dots or bullpucky dots! KPFK had other "connections" and one of them was The Firesign Theater, for example, which was also very "progressive comedy" compared to the stand up and basic stuff out there. But it was not as "intelectual" as PC and DM could be, for example. So, "progressive" was in the air, but not discussed as such.
 
At KTYD, Guy took that step, and played a lot of things ... the combination of which, by comparison to 99/100 of the "progressive outlets" today, sorry ... those 99 are not about the music! And they are not "progressive" ... which Guy WAS.
 
It's a fascinating history ... and it's too bad that Blobfish can only glog and gluk and not grok his experience, because he probably could say a lot more about all this stuff ... but his sainthood in the Saint Guido's Cathedral ceilings and sisterns ... that's another story and tickle!


Edited by moshkito - May 02 2012 at 09:36
... none of the hits, none of the time ... you might actually find your own art, or self, instead of paying for a guru or church or social program!



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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Finnforest Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: May 03 2012 at 05:53
Just heard this Hayward guy guest hosting a national morning talk show.  He was talking prog and playing Giant, Rush, and Tull while I listened.  

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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote moshkito Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: May 03 2012 at 08:55
Originally posted by Finnforest Finnforest wrote:

Just heard this Hayward guy guest hosting a national morning talk show.  He was talking prog and playing Giant, Rush, and Tull while I listened.  
 
In santa Barbara, Rush and Jethro Tull were being played ... but Guy had been playing Gentle Giant for several years before others played it ... it probably was not until "Freehand" came out that other folks in the station played something, which was more "radio friendly" ... than the earlier GG.
 
That ought to give you an idea ... and of course ... right after ... here's the new Elton John song ... so it tells you that most of those folks couln't handle the music and really didn't care!
... none of the hits, none of the time ... you might actually find your own art, or self, instead of paying for a guru or church or social program!



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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote moshkito Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: May 04 2012 at 21:00
That's good ... probably very good, and I have to admit that a couple of the things he played (do you have a list of it? -- the recording of this was horrible), were nice and very effective. And he did not go and stomp on the "top five" that we mention, other than YES.
 
The "nerdy, introspective" thing is not ... quite true, at least as far as Santa Barbara was concerned and the California area, that had more variety and chance to listen to different things than most areas and places around America, and indeed, most of the world.
 
I find it funny that he says that Dave Brubeck is important, but when you see the Tom Dowd film, you will go ... oh my word ... where is all that black stuff, because some of the things that Tom is recording and plays for us in the background, are things that I have not been able to identify ... and it was "progressive" (specially for the time), but not "popular" per se, because radio was not playing the black music. Remember that in America, it wasn't until 1965 that the whole thing changed with the president making sure that a couple of laws were passed that allowed Blacks to vote and have a voice. Meaning that the music before then, was not accepted by the mainstream for the most part here and was not that visible.
 
I really believe that this is important, in the eventual definition of Miles Davis, for example, even though you and I can easily see that for him, it might have not been so much about the "jazz" or the "music" as it was about whatever he wanted to do at any moment in time, most of which, is now a part of the "definition" of jazz in its application.
 
But the best part of it, is what he mentions, but does not exactly expand on it, he stuck to the bands and the art itself, which is MAGNIFICENT, is the advent of FM radio, that at the time did not have the "rules' that most AM radio has, which is to play 13 to 14 songs within the hour, and 7 of those are "hits" (blue dots), 3 of those are prospective hits (yellow dots) and 3 of those are old hits (green dots) ... as an example. The early FM radio as per California and Madison (Wisconsin) definition, meant that ... there was no importance placed on the length of the music and what the music was. And in those first 3 to 4 years, you heard an incredible amount of music, most of which, we consider today "progressive", because unlike most "pop music" this stuff was very meaningful to a generation and what/how we define ourselves in time and place and history.
 
I am proud of having been a part of that "progressive" history, and I still write about it, although I might not accept the definition of the term as well as you or others would have liked.
 
The part that is hard, is when you put all this together.
 
You have heard this guy.
 
You know your time and place in London.
 
You have heard Mosh scream and cry.
 
You have seen the Krautrock thing.
 
You know the scene in Italy is influenced by classical music.
 
... and so forth ... now let's put it together as the important "progressive" voice of the time and place and what it all meant.
 
Lastly, you can see why I get so emotional about Woodstock and such ... the way he describes the "drugs" and that whole thing is sad ... because there were a lot of us that were not that drugged out, and in my case, I took to the European scene because it was more artistic, than it was drugged out. I, however, do not have a negative connotation, or reaction to the whole "drug" thing ... just the part that says that we were all stonies and none of the music mattered at all, and that all the words that Jim, Janis and Jimi had were worthless.
 
The sex part, I have no issues with, and it was no different than to take advantage of the time, place and Playboy (if you will) with dearest Marilyn as everyone's favorite fantasy, so to speak, thanks to the movies and all that. The stars, all of a sudden had to be "sexy" ... and I always thought that one scene in the Ken Russell film with Helen Mirren walking naked down the stairs (can't even remember the film!) was an excellent take on the whole thing ... it wasn't sexy or sexual ... it just was! No different than another statue out there in a museum that you don't think of as .... lest Blobfish will accuse you of statutory rape!
 
That kind of change, Blacks getting a chance, and the media now is in color on TV and "alive" instead of hours later as radio mostly was, is really what the "progressive" thing started out with.
 
But most important of all, are the words of Edgar Froese in that special ... that it was a time when there was no past, no future, just you, and time to find out what is here. And I think that a lot of the music and the words, lyrics and poems, reflect that really well. When this is compared to a lot of the "prog" in the 1990's and 2000, most of it does not measure up at all, although you and I will always, find, and appreciate a lot of new music.
 
I guess you could say that my part for this board, is to help people KNOW, and UNDERSTAND that a lot of the music of "today" is also important to them, a lot more than just a preference. I did not went for any of those bands because I had a secret desire to go to bed with Janis, or the girls with Mick Jagger, Roger Daltrey or Robert Plant! And this is really the difference in it all, and the main reason why so many of these "bands" are the composers, the writers and the artists of your generation and mine. And they deserve that credit and respect.
 
Gawd knows that we need more lectures like this, from folks like you ... that have the history and the story behind it all.
... none of the hits, none of the time ... you might actually find your own art, or self, instead of paying for a guru or church or social program!



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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote moshkito Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: May 04 2012 at 21:21
Originally posted by Finnforest Finnforest wrote:

Just heard this Hayward guy guest hosting a national morning talk show.  He was talking prog and playing Giant, Rush, and Tull while I listened.  
 
Finn ... did you happen to record that by chance?
... none of the hits, none of the time ... you might actually find your own art, or self, instead of paying for a guru or church or social program!



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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Finnforest Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: May 04 2012 at 22:27
I did not....I just caught a bit of this talk show while half asleep and getting ready for work.  It was strange to hear Gentle Giant on the Bill Bennett show.  Wacko

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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Dean Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: May 05 2012 at 14:36
Perspective. That is all that is lacking from any anecdotal history of Progressive Rock and the history of all other forms of intelligent Rock music that feed in and draw from the Progressive Rock genre. Every music commentator and self-appointed rock historian describes the world from their single perspective and uses their own perception of filtered events, (events filtered by the media - the rock press, tv & radio, record company A&R and PR, the artist biographies and all those flowery published "illustrated" histories of rock; and filtered by the distance of time and the persistence of unreliable memory), to create an image that supports their preconceptions of how it was and how it is and how it should ever be.
 
But Show Business is a fake world built around mythology, selective memories and prejudiced myopia, and (whether we like it or not) serious Rock music is as much a part of Show Business Tinsel Town Tinpan Alley razzmatazz as any (supposedly) manufactured Pop or teenie-bopper iconology, idolatry and hero-ology. Even in the realm of serious Progressive Rock, the Biz prevailed and the machine rumbled on creating mythologies populated by rock gods and guitar demons and keyboard wizards to cloud and forge the memories and perceptions they wanted to create. So those individual perceptions and memories are biased and tunnel-visioned to produce the answers they want you to find (and those you wish to find), rather than uncover any truth or validity in an account or "history". Everything in popular music is transitory, nothing was meant to last forever so nothing was retained "in perpetuity" - the history was lost before it was fully documented and recorded. And nothing has changed - no one is writing the history of contemporary music as it is happening - in forty years time people will be arguing the story of today's rock and pop bands through the same rose-tinted spectacles that we currently use to argue the Prog of yesteryear.
 
So how do we obtain "perspective" from all these disparate commentaries? Well, it's not by discarding those that disagree with our own perceptions that's for sure, nor is it by extrapolating those ideas that support our ideas either, because all that does is mold all the information to fit our own preconceptions, which adds nothing new to the pot.
 
By overlapping and overlaying in a huge abstract Venn-diagram of consensus we can arrive at a version of events that a majority will agree upon, but is that still a biased account built upon inaccurate preconceptions? Because no matter how often, or how many, conclusively demonstrate that the maxim "Punk killed Prog" is a fallacy, the myth continues. And so it is with so many personally held beliefs: that Prog is Euro-centric; that Prog is this that or the other; that one person knows the true answer; that one version of events is more "real" than all others; that the views of one person from within the system describes the homogeneous view as seen from space. These are all pieces in the puzzle but none of them describe the whole picture. Some are more valid than others but that does not make them more important, more truthful or a more accurate reflection of reality. If a respected band member or pillar of rock society has said something profound and interesting it does not mean it is a universal truth that can be liberally and indiscriminately applied, it may be an anecdote that accurately described a particular philosophy or moment in time and space, but that's all it is and it is only applicable to that person in that moment, even if it appears to fit a different person in a different moment. Yet it remains a valid observation worthy of recording and documenting and perhaps even commenting upon, but we need to balance that in light of all other anecdotal observations. In one BBC documentary Ralf Hütter described Kraftwerk band members as "Music Workers" much to the annoyance of Wolfgang Flür, who insisted he was not a music worker [but a musician], so even within one band one man's anecdote is not universally accepted by all members of the band so cannot be a general philosophy. And so it is within a genre and therefore within music in general.
 
We need to sperate the real cold and hard facts from the half-remembered, rose-tinted, idealised and romanticised facts; the truth from what we would like to be true; and the bands that are Progressive Rock from those we would like to be Progressive Rock. But perhaps that is too progressive an idea for some to accept, the notion that if what one person holds to be Progressive Rock is not shared by everyone else doesn't automatically make everyone else wrong.
 
In his lecture Professor Birzer pointed the documented origins of "progressive rock" as a descriptive term as far back as 1968 - and in a way he is right, but oh so very wrong - in that 1968 article, (and other's like it in the music press from that time), they were not referring to a genre of music, but a conceptual notion of what serious rock music was about - that all rock music was progressing from one era to another, whether that was Iron Butterfly or The Beatles or Cream or Grateful Dead or Pete Brown or John Mayal or The Move or Pink Floyd or The Nice or Renaissance or King Crimson. They were using the word as a descriptive adjective, not a naming noun. The adoption of the word for naming a genre of music came later, and some would argue after much of the music itself stopped being "progressive" as a descriptive adjective, (and I'm talking about 1970-71 here, not 1978-79 or any other later, or earlier, date). He continued to use "progressive" in its descriptive form to describe music that is not "progressive" in its noun form - The Cure's Disintegration (featured in the album cover montage) is not Prog Rock (n.) ... it is post-Punk and very "progressive" (adj.) and art with a capital "A" (but not Art Rock or Art Music, or just Art for Art sake, but music as an artistic endeavour) just as the Edgar Broughton Band was "progressive" music in its descriptive adjective form, but never entered the named genre of Prog Rock - it was an interesting and valued branch of psychedelic rock that diverged from the course that Prog would take, music that progressed out of the Rhythm and Blues Beat music of the early 60s and Psychedelic pop of the Summer of Love. Yet they are both very valid examples when discussing Progressive Rock as long as their use is qualified and not used to shoe-horn one person's favourite into everyone's idea of what Prog is - if you want to show how Progressive Rock influenced and was influenced or to illustrate parallel or tangential developments then that's valid  - not all the progressively minded musicians of the 60s and 70s produced Prog Rock or influenced its development and not all of the progressively minded musicians of the 80s and 90s produced Prog Rock or were influenced by it.
 
There will always be free-thinkers in the world of music - those that push the boundaries and stretch perceptions - and as broadminded free-thinking listeners they fall within our field of hearing, it is our remit (as those that shun the Billboard Top-40) to recognise and acknowledge their achievement, to wave the flag and carry the banner, and moreover, find the appropriate pigeon hole to file them away in to ensure the next generation of free-thinking musicians, composers, performers and listeners know where the edge of the envelope is so they can push it further or into another direction as yet unchartered. We can be very broadminded and accept all those into the cannon of Progressive Rock, but then it would not be Progressive Rock and we would need a new Name for this all-encompassing genre of serious and erudite boundary-pushing experimental rock music ... Pantheon Rock perhaps.


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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Snow Dog Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: May 05 2012 at 14:49
^So true Dean. Such a great well informed post. Will read it all one day.Wink
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Finnforest Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: May 05 2012 at 15:09
Great post Dean, may have to share that on FB. 

For my part, I'll never claim to be an expert, but rather an enthusiast.  I just like good music, past or present, and I try to tell people about stuff I think is good.  I realize it's all through my own filter.  Big smile

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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote moshkito Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: May 07 2012 at 13:57
Excellent post ... nice addition to what I sated, and in many ways, a lot clearer in its representation of  "progressive music" ... and what it really is all about ... for which the answer is ... god knows if there is an answer ... or something like that.
 
Originally posted by Dean Dean wrote:

""Punk killed Prog" is a fallacy"
 
Hahahaha ... Love this ... and I used to say that Peter Hammill gave punk meaning, which made Sex Pistols redundant!
 
Originally posted by Dean Dean wrote:

"... the bands that are Progressive Rock from those we would like to be Progressive Rock. But perhaps that is too progressive an idea for some to accept ... "
 
Agreed. Probably more than anything else I do this unwittingly!
 
The various and many influences are indeed so different (which I mention, from krautrock, to Brazil, to Madison and then Santa Barbara), but I will not claim to be an expert on Paris, London, Rome or Tokyo ... because we also know they were a part of it all ... just differently so.
 
And the influences are vast ... but I think that in the end, we can almost summarize the basic gest of the whole thing ... a desire to do something different that most pop and "known" (ie, classic) music was not demonstrating ... in all its various forms and versions.
 
Was just reading an article on the Black thing last week, and I went looking for more, and it had to do with the Rights Act in 1965 that gave Blacks and others the right to vote in America, and have a voice, which up to that time was not the case and a serious issue in American Politics. There really were, not that many great musicians that one can really mention for 1960, for example, and when you see the Tom Dowd DVD, it will stick why some ... and give the extension of music in America a big push from 1965 on. And Motown and many of those companies succeeded almost immediately ... because they were there ... but unknowns or invisibles at the time ... until they no longer have to be invisible.
 
Side note here ... which I got to see, and gives you how some things changed in America so fast ... in less than 10 years!  ... from 1968 to 72 I got to see a lot of black artists in both Madion and all over California. Even Charley Musselwhite and others in SF, only brought the majority of folks as black in the audience. Earth Wind and Fire -- 95% black. James Brown 100% black. Chuck Berry 95% black ... and one day my girlfriend wanted me to go see Michael Jackson (Thriller) and guess what ... 50% Black and sold out! ... which tells you that even that is an insane adjustment in American culture and society.
 
Likewise, there are the many stories of American black musicians going to Europe, because they could not play in America, like they wanted to ... Byrd being a very famous one has been glamorized in movies and there are others.
 
So, something like the hippy scene and the psychedelic scene in America, becomes an incredible compialtion of color and music ... and when you see Woodstock, you see both! And when that many people showed up, and all those bands sold some incredible numbers ... you knew that there was some vindication that not only had to do with color, but also to do with the music itself.
 
Where it comes from, and where it goes ... you're absolutely right ... impossible to gauge ... but the changes in time are crazy, and impossible to note all around, but American History books are not very kind to Indians, or Blacks, and even though it is changing some, there are places in the American south that still don't do it and don't respect the Black Culture or people. It's downright scary sometimes, btw, to still see that. And that's just the part that deals with one culture.
 
How do we add all of everything into a nice resolute work? ... I think, in the end, it depends more on what we see, and wish to see, than it does anything else. If we wish to compile a "better" unity of disciplines and places, we have the people to help do this and come up with the best and cleanest of all definitions of "progressive" music ever done, and I think that will help us cement a legacy ... that both you and I know, deeply, deserves a lot of credit and appreciation for their work.
 
At any rate ... excellent work ... lastly ... I really thought that the professor's basis was "psychedelic pop radio" a lot more than anything else. Other than the typical "college radio band mention" (as it is known here), he did not really show anything more than pop music.


Edited by moshkito - May 07 2012 at 14:04
... none of the hits, none of the time ... you might actually find your own art, or self, instead of paying for a guru or church or social program!



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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote moshkito Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: May 07 2012 at 15:06
Hi,
 
In many ways, what we are considering "progressive" do not usually list a lot of American things at the start, and based on plain history -- encyclopaedic style -- you're right ... it's almost impossible to consider the American version of things "progressive" ... but in reverse, I'm starting to think that the advent of FM radio, was also the one thing that helped validate the London scene with massive sales to help take all of this further. None of the bands, other than ELP's Lucky Man had a hit in the waves ... which begs the question ... how could these things sell? ... in places like America ... and the FM radio thing really helped it come alive.
 
AM radio in 68/69, had the small version of Light My Fire, Foxy Lady (because in Madison that was a lot better than talk about drugs) and All Along the Watchtower, Piece of My Heart, Me and Bobby McGee for example ... but then you got to the new FM station at the University of Wisconsin (first radio station in America, btw) and you heard ... The End, Ball and Chain, Axis Bold as Love ... and all of a sudden, you went out and got the album because ... that's pretty damn good ... and it helps speak for what you believe.
 
In Santa Barbara, being a rich spot, that didn't like derelicts (hahahaha!), so the town would appear richer than it really is (the federales later ruined it!), it was very hip, to know more "artists" than just popular musicians. And the tastes were ecletic and sometimes strange. But the two main FM stations, one was owned by the local newspaper, Santa Barbara News Press and it only played takes of top ten FM from Variety! and the other was KTYD, that was free form up until it was sold in '76 or something like it, to Texaco ... at which point, it reamined still the strong station that it was, but all of a sudden the hassles were not as much fun to hear or put up with as far as my roomate is concerned, not to mention the Mexican wages and benefits and insults! ... but the music? Kept on coming!
 
So, you can see how some of this music that we like is so important -- at least how I describe it ... but you are no stranger to it! 
 
How the freedom of speech and scowling attack from Edgar Broughton Band is not a fluke, and how the words in KC's album are not flukes, and how Greg Lake's wording in ELP, is not a fluke ... it is, mostly a serious comment and understanding of things, and I believe that it spoke just as well for us in California, as it did for us in Madison, as it did for you in London, and that the IRA thing which was just as scary and an issue as the VietNam War protests were at Hyde Park that some of these bands played in  ... so, just like the snapshot in the very first part of the Krautrock special, with All Along the Watchtower, the unrest was global ... and a lot of music came out of that unrest. As you stated, not all of it was "progressive", and I agree ... and perhaps that is the part that we probably could clean up some more ... not to make sure that the divisions are stronger, but to ensure that the musical period is better remembered.
 
But,  as you can tell, it is not that there was no "prog" in the 80's or 90's ... in general one could say that the socio-political upheaval was not as important or strong world wide ... in order to help ceate something that is as valuable as the time and place we were a part of. 


Edited by moshkito - May 07 2012 at 15:29
... none of the hits, none of the time ... you might actually find your own art, or self, instead of paying for a guru or church or social program!



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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Dean Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: May 07 2012 at 19:23
While I agree that the social and political upheaval of the 60s played its part, I do genuinely doubt its significance as the decade ended and the 70s dawned. The music scene of the 70s was escapism - either extrovert and showy or introvert and hidden - spaceflight and fantasy or headmusic and insanity - it was an escape from the gritty and unpleasant realism that the crash and burn of the dying throws of the hippy movement left in its wake - all the promise that the post-war 50s and 60s baby-boom offered was crumbling away and offered nothing to 17 year-old kids that hooked onto the burgeoning Progressive Music scene (apart from fuelling Roger Water's cynicism). The Ban the Bomb, the anti-Vietnam war protests and the Paris riots were of the other, older, generation, it didn't belong to the new genreation that listened to the Prog bands of the late 60s/early 70s. While the Hippies of the Psychedelic scene embraced political change and looked to the dawning of the age of Aquarius, the Prog scene turned its back and stared at its shoes while it indulged itself in prolonged swathes of melancholic introspection - it became apolitical and anti-fashion, the antithesis of everything the 60s thought it was heading towards.... the bubble had burst and the dream had ended... all that remained was a plague of lighthouse keepers - even the German bands threw out the political activists from their commune and danced the dance of the lemmings. Happy times these were not.
 
In the story of Progressive Rock America played its part  - it started it but didn't know where to go with it - American Psyche inspired European Psyche inspired Progressive Rock, but it didn't produce its own version of Progressive Rock from that original American Psychedelic Rock blueprint - unlike the Europeans who took the Psyche blueprint inspired by Jefferson Airplane and the whole Woodstock generation and screwed it over, and from that each country and city produced their own version of Prog, (not just London or Köln but everywhere). Which is why there is no single definition of Prog - it has no single point of origin.
 
What I am getting at is the history of Progressive Rock is never going to be one single account because there are no contemporary accounts of the whole picture, because no one ever saw the whole picture.


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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote moshkito Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: May 08 2012 at 10:41
Originally posted by Dean Dean wrote:

... .... the bubble had burst and the dream had ended... all that remained was a plague of lighthouse keepers - even the German bands threw out the political activists from their commune and danced the dance of the lemmings. Happy times these were not.
 
Now you know why so many people really disliked things like ... if you come to San Francisco, be sure to wear flowers in your hair ... because the joke was that it brought all the jerks and fruits you could think of, and busted up a scene that was considered honest, and continued to live through, by way of the Grateful Dead, the best representatives of the whole thing ... but yeah ... I agree ... that sometimes the music itself and the whole thing was not as important as the enjoyment and getting ripped and have sex thing, which was fine, but the European music, FOR ME, had more direction, be it influenced by the better educational standards or otherwise. It really felt like in SF/LA that no one gave a damn about the music, so it was cool to see and like Iggy (before punk!) because it was so far out and different ... yeah ... but was it giving us more meaning and expression? ... I didn't think so at the time and neither did anyone else I went with to the Whiskey A Go Go to see Babe Ruth that same night!
 
America has no educational standards. There is no grammar, and each state want to teach their own version of God, rather than the Grammar of the language. It is a "memorized" language where spook, book, look and cook, words are said differently and they are still between two consonants. American English has no consonants or vowels ... it has ... what do they call it here? ... ebonics!  So, seeing  folks in NY not give a dang about LA/SF or vice versa, or Nashville, is ... par for the course here! This, actually means that any group out there, that wants to make music has to either be a Berklee Music graduate (hahaha!) and create something that people think would make it progressive or prog by definition, or you have the total disregard for everything ... stoned or otherwise ... that sometimes brings results and sometimes ... as Frank would say ... is some of the worst ____ you ever known!
 
But it helps create the likes of Frank Zappa, Miles Davis and many others, because the know nothing, no definition of nothing, sometimes helps with the creative process -- specially when you know -- "there isn't one" ... in different parts of the country ... but don't try to thrash/prog in Nashville ... no one will show up or give a damn ... but you might want to twang that guitar on top of some prog in there ... and we're probably gonna giggle, but say ... that's pretty good ... until ... oh my Gawd ... that's Chris Spedding twanging the guitar!
 
I already knew that whole thing was dead, but my European background made it easier for me to make the transition to European music, that was ... much more intelligent and interesting for my tastes ... although I still find it strange that we think that one thing is trippy and progressive and In a Gadda Da Vida is trippy and nothing else. Os that 8 Miles High was not as cool or as definitive to the whole scene, both progressive and the other, but yeah ... it was like saying, let's get stoned and who cares about the music.
 
As I said before, I think that one of the greatest differences here, was the media and press in places like London that validated a lot of music, much better and with more intent than they did in America, where there were no publications supporting the music and the concerts, and Rolling Stone was more interested in nude pictures of John and Yoko!
 
Originally posted by Dean Dean wrote:

...
In the story of Progressive Rock America played its part  - it started it but didn't know where to go with it - American Psyche inspired European Psyche inspired Progressive Rock, but it didn't produce its own version of Progressive Rock from that original American Psychedelic Rock blueprint - unlike the Europeans who took the Psyche blueprint inspired by Jefferson Airplane and the whole Woodstock generation and screwed it over, and from that each country and city produced their own version of Prog, (not just London or Köln but everywhere). Which is why there is no single definition of Prog - it has no single point of origin.
 
I am not sure that the American scene could find a definition or blue print for much of anything. In the end, a lot of it is reactionary and individualistic, and no one will argue that it is not with Janis, Jim or Miles or many other things, and the worst part ... is that America is really 3 or 4 countries together, which means that the concensus in NY will never be enjoyed in California, or Nashville!
 
So seeing the explosion off the drugs and whatever, makes sense here, but where to take it? ... there's no where to take it, when all you are doing is experiencing it! And this was, to me, very important, and the main reason why I stopped drugs and all that .... because of the attitude ... let's get stoned ... and waste time ... even The Beatles were trying to tell you that you could do more than that!  
 
Originally posted by Dean Dean wrote:

What I am getting at is the history of Progressive Rock is never going to be one single account because there are no contemporary accounts of the whole picture, because no one ever saw the whole picture.
 
I agree ... but while I do not think that Shakespeare is the window to the sould of the Elizabethean Age, or that Sophocles is the window to the soul of Greece, I do believe that we can improve the "soul" of the "progressive" work, all around. That's not to say that we must all agree and kiss each other and do what Snow Dog does so well sniffing, instead of speaking that he sees it differently ... and still says I have no information that is valid ... because he can not read the papers or see the life I lived, which I do express here in the best words I can, and have experienced - despite my inability to state clearly what I sometimes want to say ... ! I still try!
 
In the end, this is about us. We may not believe we can do something, but I do believe that thinking that we can improve it, is a good thing. That, in no way WHATSOEVER, means that Snow Dog, you, and others on this board are not doing their part ... they ARE ... and they deserve the credit for the amount of work they do that they do not get paid for ... which is incredible, insane, and sometimes ... yeah ... ahve another drink!
 
We are improving the "soul" of the progressive history and mind, no worries. I suppose that I simply would like to see it better organized than just a database ... and yeah ... that's my preference.


Edited by moshkito - May 08 2012 at 11:15
... none of the hits, none of the time ... you might actually find your own art, or self, instead of paying for a guru or church or social program!



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