Amoeblog

The Cover Story

Posted by Joe Goldmark, February 28, 2013 06:20pm | Post a Comment

Head to the Vinyl Beat website to check out extensive LP label guides and wild cover galleries!

Eric  Christensen has made an entertaining and informative documentary called The Cover Story about iconic album covers and how they came to fruition. There are interviews and stories with a number of the photographers and designers such as Bob Seidemann (Blind Faith), Henry Diltz (Morrison Hotel, Crosby Stills & Nash, Eagles), Mouse (Grateful Dead), and Jim Marshall (Allman Brothers and hundreds of others). Along the way he also interviews such rock luminaries as Nick Lowe, Ray Manzarek, Huey Lewis, Elvis Costello, and Sammy Hagar. There’s also a very intimate chat with Yoko Ono where she talks about John’s blood smeared glasses, etc. It is also a hoot to see a psychedelic Amoeba SF in the introduction.

Continue reading...

Happy Birthday Alan Aldridge -- The Man with the Kaleidoscope Eyes

Posted by Eric Brightwell, June 1, 2012 04:00pm | Post a Comment

Today is the 69th birthday of English artist, graphic designer and illustrator, Alan Aldridge (click here to visit his site). His distinct airbrush work adorned numerous books and albums in the 1960s and '70s and helped define the aesthetic of the era -- equal parts whimsy and menace.

Aldridge appeals to me, in part, due to the way he draws upon older artists from very different traditions. The grotesque, fantastical characters echo the febrile visions of Dutch Renaissance painter Hieronymus Bosch. The invasive, sometimes threatening vegetation reminds me of the vegetable portraits of Italian Mannerist Giuseppe Arcimboldo. The soft, velvety folds and textures of clothing remind me of French Neoclassicist Jean Auguste Dominique Ingres's almost single-minded focus on mastering the technique of depicting textiles.
 
As a young child, when I was first exposed to Aldridge, I hadn't yet heard of any of those artists. I don't remember ever even asking who Alan Aldridge was, but it was clear even that his particular synthesis of influences and ability to simultaneously captivate and repulse was immediately recognizable as the work of one artist, whatever work it adorned.

     

Aldridge was born in East London in 1943. One of his first jobs as an illustrator was for The Sunday Times. He was hired in 1965 by Penguin Books' chief editor, Tony Godwin, to serve as art director after impressing them with his freelance covers. Examples of his work can be seen on numerous science-fiction revised editions c. 1967 and The Penguin Book of Comics (1967), and The Beatles Illustrated Lyrics (1969).

  

In 1968 he started his own graphic design firm, INK, who ended up designing a number of iconic album covers through the 1970s, as well as the graphics for Jane Arden's play, Vagina Rex and the Gas Oven in 1969.

 
My sister owned a copy of the picture book The Butterfly Ball and the Grasshopper's Feast (1973), an amazing children's book illustrated by Aldridge full of beauty and a creepiness that eludes description. My mother owned a copy of Elton John's concept album, Captain Fantastic and the Brown Dirt Cowboy (1975). I gave it a few curious spins but his music never did much for me. The artwork, however, again the work of Aldridge, held me spellbound. Although I didn't realize it, when a couple third grade classmates and I attempted to provide a literal illustration of The Beatles' "Lucy in the Sky with Diamonds," we were probably unknowingly influenced by Aldridge (and probably a bit of Heinz Edelmann and Milton Glaser) although it goes without saying that our results were slightly less accomplished.

The Who's A Quick One (1966), Andy Warhol   George Harrison's Wonderwall Music (1968) 

A few of the iconic designs Aldridge was behind include the cover for The Who's A Quick One (1966), Andy Warhol and Paul Morrissey's Chelsea Girls (1966), George Harrison's Wonderwall Music (1968), and later albums like Tears for Fears' Everybody Loves a Happy Ending (2004) and Incubus's Light Grenades (2006). 

    

He also illustrated The Ship's Cat (1977) and two sequels to The Butterfly Ball and the Grasshopper's FeastThe Peacock Party (1979) and The Lion's Cavalcade (1980).
*****

Become a fan of Eric's Blog on Facebook!   

Money Changes Everything, Pt.2

Posted by Gomez Comes Alive!, July 13, 2009 02:08am | Post a Comment



KMFDM-Money



Everything But The Girl- Love Not Money



Donna Summer- She Works Hard For The Money



The Dream
- Love vs. Money



Dire Straits - Money For Nothing



Dennis Brown- Money In My Pocket



Delroy Wilson
- Money


Conflict
- Turning Rebellion Into Money



Eric Clapton - Money And Cigarettes



The Barkays
- Money Talks



AMG - Bitch Betta Have My Money
 

Money Changes Everything Pt. 1

Posted by Gomez Comes Alive!, June 15, 2009 11:22pm | Post a Comment




The Whispers
-One For The Money



Tom Waits- Blood Money



Supergrass- In It For The Money



Rabanes- Money Pa' Que



Pitbull-M.I.A.M.I. (Money Is A Major Issue)



Paul Wall - Get Money Stay True



Frank Zappa & The Mothers Of Invention
-We're Only In It For The Money
(Japanese Version)



Duke Ellington, Charlie Mingus, Max Roach
- Money Jungle



Mick Farren- Vampires Stole My Lunch Money



Lil' Scrappy- Money In The Bank

When Artists Go Commercial & Sell Out (or not)

Posted by Gomez Comes Alive!, June 12, 2009 12:49am | Post a Comment


Los Amigos Invisible-Commercial



The Residents- The Commercial Album

The Who- Sell Out



The Minutemen
-Project: Merch



Frank Zappa
- Strictly Commercial



Bongwater- The Big Sell-Out



Little Brother- The Commercial Free EP



Djam Karet-No Commercial Potential



Colin Newman
-Commercial Suicide