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with original portraits on vinyl.

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Friday, September 28, 2007

Call Me

Al Green

Or, at least:


Al Green 09/28/07

Thursday, September 27, 2007

15 From Across The Pond

Freddie Mercury

Since The Beatles have had the biggest impact on my musical taste, it's natural that I like any decent Brit pop, prog rock or metal. Getting to see the Verve in London is going to be extraordinary for my wife and I. It seems that most of the music I've listened to over and over, especially recently, is from the UK:

The Beatles
The Rolling Stones
Led Zeppelin
Black Sabbath
Pink Floyd
Nick Drake
The Verve
Arctic Monkeys

A couple people have suggested I paint Nick Drake, so if anybody happens to have an LP of his on vinyl that they're looking to get rid of, please let me know, ;) Right. Sure. But here's hoping! If you want to see more of what I do with old LPs, scan through more of my blog and also:


I'm not adverse to shipping oversees either. UK galleries particularly seem very hip.

Freddie Mercury 09/27/07

Wednesday, September 26, 2007

15 Musical Landmarks In My Life

Jerry Garcia - (i) inspired by photo by Richard E AaronRockzone Records in Chandler has six pieces now: Lou Reed, Jim Morrison, Michael Stipe, Bob Marley, Pink Floyd, and KISS. I've got pics in my online gallery. Jerry and Otis are for Primitive Kool. I realized I haven't really talked about what music has been important to me over the years. Here, then, are some of the bands and musicians that were pivotal in shaping my musical taste and have become part of my musical culture:

The Beatles - my dad introduced me to Revolver, on vinyl of course
Genesis w/ Peter Gabriel - lead me into prog rock, thank you MTV and "Big Time"
Pink Floyd - prog rock/psychedelia crossover
Jefferson Airplane - full-blown psychedelia
Jimi Hendrix - psychedelia/blues rock connection
The Doors - added in more keyboards and hammond organ
Led Zeppelin - blues rock/heavy metal transition
Black Sabbath w/ Ozzy - "Paranoid" was my first heavy metal CD
Nirvana - grunge diversion, I was a teen in the 90s
NIN - moving into industrial, helped with teen angst too
Autechre - headlong from industrial into electronica, got a little intellectual around then
Acetone - hometown band that combined grunge, heavy metal, and interesting vocals
Lou Donaldson - got a little funky on the horn as electronica lead me into sampling
Stereophonics - a move to Phoenix and it became more about the vocals in front of the rock
Blind Melon - and passionate, pure, raw beauty

This is by *no* means near complete, but it does give a bit of an outline of my journey, musical landmarks if you will. While in college, I spent a LOT of time in used record stores listening to anything I hadn't heard before, so my interests got very diverse, and quite weird at times. Maybe someday I'll actually catalog my CDs and post a list or something. For now, here's mister Otis Redding:


Tell me about your musical journey!

Tuesday, September 25, 2007

Jammin' For Primitive Kool

Marley, Charles, Cash and Joplin - (i) inspired by photos by Adrian Boot, Jan Olofsson and Bob SeidemannPainting up a storm for the show. Don't have much to say today other than I'm curious why my blog ranking jumped so much yesterday. I wish readers would leave me comments. Let me know how you found me or start up a dialog. Something. Anything. Also, there are more examples in my online gallery if you want to:


For now back to painting! Woohoo!

Monday, September 24, 2007

What's Your Story?

Marvin Gaye - (i) inspired by photo by James Hendin

I saw a few segments of the old HBO Taxicab Confessions the other night. Our schedule was a bit outta whack after the Arctic Monkeys concert, which was excellent. It reminded me how those early shows on cable that were more raw and more reality did a lot to make me more tolerant. While it also desensitized me a bit, it made me want to seek truth and individuality, to strip away preconceived notions and let people be who they are with no judgement. Everyone is worth listening to and showing love for simply that, who they are.

That's why with my portraits I try to be true to the individual, to celebrate their natural beauty. I want the person to come through with no filters, no externally imposed beliefs. To me, it makes them feel more personal, more connected, instead of homogenized and flat.

I get to do another Zep, Stevie Ray Vaughan and Johnny Cash for Wild About Music as they sold 3 last month! Roy Robbins also sold the Sammy Davis Jr. he had on display. Here come more frames! Keep an eye on my gallery for new ones when you:


Christmas is coming! Still plenty of time to commission pieces!

Marvin Gaye 09/24/07

Friday, September 21, 2007

Papa's Got A Reused Recycled Bag

James Brown - (i) inspired by photo by David RedfernI hadn't thought of this before, but you could call my work "recycled art". I am repurposing beat-up LPs, saving them from the landfill. I like it. Jennifer Chait of thought of it.

We get to see the Arctic Monkeys tonight! It'll be awhile before our next concert I think. We're going to see The Verve in London in November.

Meanwhile, I'm getting ready for my first group show! Primitive Kool is including me in their October exhibit/beach party. I get to do some 20 pieces! James Brown and Ella Fitzgerald were first, with Marvin Gaye next. Who do you think I should do? I've got a good list together but I'd love suggestions. If you need to see others I've done:


and please feel free to call me. That's why I put my phone number up.

James Brown 09/21/07

Wednesday, September 12, 2007

Make That "Concert, Concerts"

Shoot, The White Stripes cancelled their whole US tour a couple days before we were going to see them in Albuquerque. Totally bummed is the feeling. We were so excited! Oh well.

There are a couple of paintings newly added to my online gallery, so you can:


to see'em. Please, too, do leave comments here, send me e-mail, or even call me with feedback!

Tuesday, September 11, 2007

Give And Take

My goodness! Primitive Kool already sold all five I sent them!

How... well, "kool"! I hope they want more! If you haven't seen what Vinyl Art's all about, you can also:


and give a hooray!

The Kings

I'm starting to get some really good feedback from the exposure started by Josh Spear! It's exciting to have some genuine interest coming from online! Primitive Kool in San Diego, CA received the blues portraits and should have them up soon. Janis is off to SoCal as a commission. How do you think it turned out?

The Kings of Leon were excellent at the Marquee last night. Their "show" is getting more exciting and they rocked it! Such good music, so talented. Great venue too. I would highly recommend it for Phoenix area concert-goers. The only thing about the place is the perhaps overly high-strung security. It's about like the airport, just without the actual metal detector! I don't understand the need, just not the level to which they take it. Once inside though, it's sweet.

I haven't been to an overwhelming number of concerts. I only started going with my wife when she showed me bootlegs of Black Crowes shows she'd been to as a teenager. We've seen some pretty nice ones. We're making it a priority and like planning trips around shows. The best so far for me was seeing the Crowes reunite in Atlanta. We could see the tour bus from the window of our hotel room! Beautiful city and fun venue, The Tabernacle. We also just saw Marc Ford at the Rhythm Room here in Phoenix. A little dive club, we got to sit stage left right in front of him! Sweet merciful crap, that was incredible seeing him jam for like over 3 hours.

What's your most recent concert and how did it rank with others you've seen? I wish I had been around during the 60's to see some of the people I've painted:


Now where's that Otis Redding record...

Monday, September 10, 2007

Concerts, Concerts, Concerts!

Today starts a string of concerts my wife and I get to see. First is the Kings of Leon in Tempe, AZ. We saw them in New Orleans at the House of Blues and were excited they were going to come to the Phoenix area. Then the White Stripes in Albuquerque and in San Diego. Yes, we're seeing both concerts! They put on such great live performances we couldn't resist. "Anywhere within a 6 hour drive," my wife said. Then the Arctic Monkeys back in Tempe.

This won't be cutting down on my painting much, though. I've got commissions to work on and several I want to do because I know they'll make great pieces. I'll keep posting pics as I get them done too. Oh, that Dylan wasn't at Raw Style, it was at Wild About Music in Austin, TX. I had done 2 Dylans and didn't remember which was where. But now my brother-in-law has it!

I'm trying to decide who to show at Rockzone Records. So far I've got Jim Morrison, Ozzy Osbourne, Bob Marley and Lou Reed. I'm thinking for the DJ crowd to throw up Rick James "Street Songs" with Superfreak and Isaac Hayes "Shaft" dance mixes to make'em chuckle and think. Or Queen and Kiss. What do you think? I'll post the pics after I get them framed and hung, so who do you want to see? If you need examples:


and take a look at the gallery.

Friday, September 7, 2007

Holy Jibbitz, I've Been Blogged!

Bob Dylan - (i) inspired by photo by Barry Feinstein
Josh Spear saw fit to blurb me in his blog! David Vo wrote the concise, well-composed post:

He used the Bob Dylan painting with the text, one of my favorites that I almost wish I hadn't sent off to hang at Raw Style in Santa Monica, CA. I've sent off the five blues greats, Howlin' Wolf, Billie Holiday, B.B. King, John Lee Hooker, and Ray Charles, to Primitive Kool in San Diego, CA as well. A fan who bought a Johnny Cash at Gasoline Gallery in El Segundo, CA is interested in Silverchair as well, and I actually found an album they pressed on vinyl! I've got a local record store interested in consigning some pieces as well, so I get to paint more! Off to decide who to do... oh, first, in case you'd like to see others like the one above:


and scroll through the jukebox!

Thursday, September 6, 2007

The Purpose Of Education In Life

It's hard not to question myself. I do it all the time, sometimes for the better, sometimes for the worse. I end up talking myself out of doing things and taking chances. I got lucky and was sort of hit on the head with the realization of who I am. Before that, I was floating, unsure of myself because I didn't know who that was. I suppose everyone goes through that during their formative years.

One of the main reasons I got anywhere was my sense of commitment. It also made it difficult to start anything, because I would try to plan out the whole thing in my head before even attempting it. But I did do school well, really well. Academics was my commitment from an early age. I've since realized that that wasn't who I was meant to be, so I stopped after getting a B.S. at UCLA. However, after elementary, middle, high school and university, I've come to understand what school was for, at least for me. I think my understanding would benefit others and help avoid the frustration many have with academic education, so here goes.

School is a framework built to teach how to learn and how to communicate. At least up until grad school, the content of education, in and of itself, isn't as important as the structure. Every field of study ended up being another language, another way to communicate about humanity and our place in the universe. It seemed all academics basically sought to understand who they were and where they fit into life, but did that by focussing on just one framework of understanding. I characterize myself as mostly a "big picture" kinda guy, so the best pieces that I gleaned from different areas of study ended up being those that were new ways to learn and communicate about life as a whole, not those simply useful as independent frameworks. I think schools should begin to realize their place in people's lives as providers and facilitators of communication and understanding. The purpose of learning the 3 Rs is not just to learn them independently of each other and separated from all other aspects of a student's life, but to begin to provide students with a common language and way to learn about themselves and society. Tools, they're tools.

Pop culture is humanity's most immediate and purest communication of what it's about at any given time on a large scale. One of the beautiful things about the Internet is that it's making more facets of our culture widely available more rapidly and generating more communication, which pushes our popular culture in new less explored directions. It's very inspiring to me and it's why I'm trying to be a part of it. Everybody's got something to say and school's job should be to facilitate that communication and others' understanding of it. The actual knowledge passed on is so much less important than passing on the ability to access and understand new knowledge. Hence, communication and learning to learn.

I think following this would create a more satisfying educational experience for everyone. Students wouldn't be made to feel inferior/superior to others by focussing so much on test scores, but instead would revel in being able to find out who they are in their own lives and to share that with classmates, receiving acknowledgement and understanding. Teachers wouldn't have to concentrate on regurgitation, but instead would get to use their subject matter to connect with their students' lives and help them relate to their own culture to future generations' cultures. Then students would have the desire to seek new knowledge and see how it can enable more understanding of life and a greater sense of belonging to the world.

I hope this ramble isn't ill-conceived. I certainly mean well. I'd like to think that communicating my viewpoint, sharing my passions, and being creatively productive is worthwhile. I value it in others. I do also seek acknowledgment and understanding, so please give me feedback, whether it be a comment here or an E-Mail or phone call. My E-Mail address and phone number can be found on the contact page if you:


Like all artists, I just want to be heard.

Wednesday, September 5, 2007

19 Memorable Actors

I just saw "The Straight Story" on TV during lunch after painting this one. If you haven't, rent it, take a chunk of time and watch it. I'd seen it when it came out in the theaters and it hasn't lost its impact. Not at all what one would expect from the director of "Blue Velvet", but oh my goodness what a beautiful movie. Poignant. Everything succinctly said with no unnecessary off-topic dialog. And the soundtrack is gorgeous. I remember when I saw it in the theater I almost couldn't see because I was constantly welling up with tears. Did today too.

David Lynch is so good at casting his movies. It got me thinking about actors that have had a lasting impact on me. Some are comedic geniuses and some are dramatic powerhouses, some both! In no particular order:

Jack Nicholson
Marlon Brando
Johnny Depp
Steve Martin
Katherine Hepburn
Cary Grant
John Cleese
John Goodman
Christopher Walken
Kevin Spacey
Sandra Bullock
Gary Oldman
Brad Pitt
Bill Murray
John Turturro
Dustin Hoffman
Jimmy Stewart
Robert De Niro
Michelle Pfeiffer

Another odd list when I look back at it. Performances that have stuck with me though, for sure. Who'd be on your list? I really would like to know. Please give me comments and see the new-ish gallery layout when you:


won't you?

Tuesday, September 4, 2007

Creative Repetition - Top 8 Musical Examples

One thing I really admire is consistency. Luke Chueh is a lowbrow artist who's got it down. At it's base, consistency is sophisticated repetition, I think. Warhol. You know. It's what I strive for, especially when I do more than one of the same image. These are handpainted, but I try to get them as close as possible. They always have their own character, but they do stand up to the side-by-side test.

In music, same thing. I like looping and repeated melodies. Philip Glass and Steve Reich are pioneers in modern classical music (gotta love that oxymoron). The Beatles were one of the first bands to use loops in popular music. During my teen years, at one point I got into electronica and sampling at the same time. Here are some albums that defined those genres for me:

"Le Parc" by Tangerine Dream
"Endtroducing" by DJ Shadow
"Lifeforms" by Future Sound of London
"Dig Your Own Hole" by The Chemical Brothers
"The Grassy Knoll" by The Grassy Knoll
"Maxinquaye" by Tricky
"Incunabula" by Autechre
"I Was Young and I Needed the Money!" by Clifford Gilberto

Looking through my collection, I found a whole bunch more, but these are the standouts for me. At some point I'll tell you how some of these, along with a bit of teen angst led me into industrial and heavy metal. Fun stuff. Now I listen to funk and blues while I paint legends like B.B. King. My online gallery now has PayPal Buy it Now buttons for some immediately available pieces, so:


and see if one you want is already for sale!

Flickr On And Off

I'm getting some sparks of interest, including comments on the Audrey Hepburn on Flickr. My page there is:

I've made my main website gallery clearer, too, as far as buying currently available ones and locations of others. Any painting you see on my main website or my other site at is either currently for sale or available for commission.

I'm off to paint a couple more, but in the meantime:


and let me know what you think! As it evolves, I need feedback as it's for you after all.