Tuesday, May 24, 2011

Bosco Got A Roscoe

Twenty-one year old random doodle from the pen of elusive Booger Clown/Lobster Boy Comix Head Cheese Felix Wilson Jr., recently unearthed during the latest attempt to organize the massive PDGB archives. Sharp-eyed devotees of the punk music will undoubtedly recognize the illustrator as the same guilt-ridden neurotic that gave the world, among other things, the gut-busting antics of "Bazooka Morris and His Gang" comic strip, the cover art for Toledo based rock band, Gone In Sixty Seconds, and most notably, the notorious 1983 LP cover from the band that boldly declared "You Suck!," a sentiment held so closely by the politically correct-adverse rock combo they found the need to reiterate it in 1994, and again in 2008.

For approximately three years, Bosco navigated the transient population and innate debauchery of Toledo's mighty Perth Manor with ease, always eager to share his portly and stylish fuzziness with anyone who offered a pant leg to rub up against. Over the years, Bosco* shared a mattress with numerous traveling luminaries and musicians including The Rollins Band, The Misfits/Samhain, and Das Damen. And he could eat like a freak.

*AKA Bosco Buddy, The Luxurious Bosconian, Samwich-Havin' Bosco, and about six-dozen other random nicknames. Just the very mention of the name "Bosco," can send former Perth House resident Michael Montgomery into an involuntary semi-catatonic state, tales of Bosco's adventures spilling forth with the gravitas of sacred words from a peyote-ingesting tribal elder.

Thursday, May 19, 2011

Collect call for Mr. Paul Allen of Seattle:

You and your wallet are needed in Pittsburgh, STAT!

Paul Mawhinney was born and raised in Pittsburgh, PA. Over the years he has amassed what has become the world's largest record collection. Due to health issues and a struggling record industry Paul is being forced to sell his collection.

This is the story of a man and his records. I hope you enjoy it.
But wait! How do we know he's not just some huckster trying to make a fast buck on a bunch of vinyl he pulled from the dumpsters behind the local Goodwill?
  1. Shirt-straining gut?--------------------check
  2. Gender neutral eyewear?--------------check
  3. Mewlery (PDGB for old guy bling)?---check
  4. Facial Hair?----------------------------check
It's cool-he's legit. He's one of us.
Never can be too sure with this type of thing.

Seriously, this is the most touching thing I've seen in quite awhile. But then I'm like that. Any readers know the current status of Paul and his vinyl?

Microsoft co-founder and billionaire Paul Allen is a well-known fan of music and pop culture, philanthropist, creator of the Experience Music Project, owner of the Seattle Seahawks, Portland Trailblazers and a really, really, big boat. He's probably one of a handful of people with the cash to buy the collection and a place to put it.

NIPTDWTT (Nothing In Particular To Do With Toledo Thursday) Post - Blues Maker (1969)

Although many Toledoeans may find it of particular interest. 
Amazing documentary featuring Mississippi Fred Mc Dowell, singing and talking about his blues. Produced by the University of Mississippi.

(Double Click for full screen)

Monday, May 16, 2011

*Bong* *Bong* * Bong*: You Put Jelly Beans In 'Em.

"Mom always made the best hash brownies, until her old Waring mixer finally died. But now we can skip the trip to the kitchen and spark up her brownie mix anywhere with the new Bong Blender from Oster!"
You can bet Kim "Tootie" Fields has one.

Thursday, May 12, 2011

NIPTDWTT* (Nuthin' In Particular To Do With Toledo Thursday) Post

Although particular Toledoeans my find it of interest.
Bad Brains Live, West Palm Beach 3.20.87

1987 was a strange time for hardcore. Scene stalwarts Black Flag and Minor Threat had disbanded due to a confluence of factors, and the DKs had become a professional punk attraction for tourists. Redd Kross -god bless 'em- had long dropped all hardcore-pretension and were busy rocking out in all the stringy-haired glory we knew they could, while the CBGB's scene in NY evolved into this metal/thrash/skin scene that appeared have more inclusive rules than prison.

Major Labels came calling, and within a few years on either side of the video above, many once raucous, respected, and groundbreaking bands such as Husker Du, Sonic Youth, Meat Puppets, Butthole Surfers and the Bad Brains all politely took their seats at the corporate dinner table. I know, I know; but at the time it seemed like a big deal.

The genius of the Bad Brains is/was they  never set out specifically to be a "hardcore" band, they simply happened to be a group of intensely talented individuals who fully understood and harnessed the passion, speed and power of  hardcore on their own terms, merging it with their existing artistic and occasionally un-PC agenda.  As such, the typical regimented artistic boundaries of the hardcore scene seemingly didn't apply, or at very least the rulebook was open for broad interpretation: Witness here, a non-ironically Cosby-sweatered Dr. Know dispensing chorus-pedal tainted Rasta-Var-Halian licks far more akin to the Sunset Strip axe-shredding sensibilities of the day than the HC pentatonic template hammered out on the stages of the Masque, 9:30 and Freezer Theater. But in their hands, it works.

The Spring Break crowd appears polite enough, but with the exception of a few enlightened individuals, it's clear the Bad Brains energy is lost on the Beach Blanket Bongo audience.

Although pieces of this video have been floating around for years, this is the first time I've ever seen it available in it's entirety.

While we're getting all misty-eyed over post '85 Hardcore, check out Dave Markey's amazing doc of life on the road with Black Flag. The first true hardcore Cali band to put out a record and tour east, BF essentially wrote the HC guidebook in the process. Despite theses accomplishments, BF remained so unsatiated they took said book, scribbled in-between the lines, doodled in the margins, and tore off both covers plotting their future. Right fucking on.
BUMMER! It appears they've pulled the plug on this vid due to copyright restrictions.

"Reality 86'd" A film by David Markey (c) 1991 We Got Power Films. (TRT 01:01:51) A road documentary shot from the inside of the last Black Flag tour ever (the 1986 "In My Head" US tour.) Greg Ginn along with Henry Rollins, Cel Revulta, and Anthony Martinez comprise the final line up of the band. Featuring behind the scenes proceedings and live performances from Black Flag, Painted Willie, and Gone (Ginn's side project, then featuring Sim Cain and Andrew Weiss (later of the Rollins Band) . Filmmaker / musician David Markey was along for the entire trip as the drummer / singer for Painted Willie (with Phil Newman & Vic Makauskas), documenting the six month tour as it happened. Also features roadie Joe ("Planet Joe") Cole, soundmen Davo Claasen and Dave "Ratman" Levine, and the tour manager who kept it all together, Mitch Bury. A crucial turning point in American underground rock. The end of the line for a trail blazing American band.

Wednesday, May 4, 2011

"No Springs, Honest Weight" Toledo Scale

Sparrow Market. Ann Arbor, MI

"We are not obligated to sell one more scale, but we are morally bound to service the scales we have already sold."
Henry Theobold 
Founder, Toledo Scale

It's always satisfying to see one of these older Toledo-born & bred babies out in the wild still providing reliable service with their trademark accuracy. I'm 99% sure the scale pictured above is a model 2110, which has been in production for over half a century with only  minor mechanical, cosmetic and nomenclature revisions. The globe is positively littered with vintage examples still in daily use, their presence serving not only as gentle reminders of the industrial might Toledo once wielded, but also as artifacts from an era when machinery was designed with serviceability and longevity in mind. Mr. Theobolds  mission statement (above) represents a concept that seems to have  escaped the "stack 'em deep and sell 'em cheap" importers peddling much of the disposable junk equipment available today. And when I was a boy, this here internet was all farmland.

Through a series of innovations including the patented and slogan-inspiring spring-free dual pendulum movement, Toledo Scale revolutionized the industry in the early 1900's and absolutely dominated the retail point-of-sale and industrial scale 
business for the rest of the 20th century.  

Although the corporate H.Q. moved 120 miles south to Columbus in the mid-1970s, a small amount of manufacturing muscle stayed put at  their Albert Khan-designed Telegraph Road Facility in Toledo until 1984. Hopes of production of any capacity resuming at the location were crushed on July 5th, 1985, when the building -which had previously survived a direct hit from the devastating Palm Sunday Tornado in 1965- was destroyed by fire. In 1989 T-Scale merged with Mettler, a highly regarded Swiss manufacturer of precision lab instruments, the pair emerging from the union as Mettler-Toledo.

But this story is not one entirely of bittersweet Toledo nostalgia. Unlike the majority of corporations that abandoned Toledo in the 70's, Mettler-Toledo still employs actual Americans, including many right here in the good old USofA! At last check, their worldwide payroll included over 11,000 employees, 3000 of which stateside, including 700 in central Ohio.
Here is John.