Reader, you will find all this inside and more:
Why did shock jock Russ Martin tie me to a chair with duct tape?
Why did Frank Zappa call KNON while I was working there?
Which Musea cover was printed upside down?
Why was my $1,000,000 Collage at 500 X titled Janet Kutner Writes Daffy Reviews.
Where was the best deep dish in Deep Ellum?
Why was the Inwood Theater gassed that night?
Why couldn't the TV repairman hook Stanley Marcus up to cable?
Did Musea find a photo of Cy Twombly developing his style on a blackboard?
What was in that Musea Stand Gift Box every Christmas at the Inwood?
What photo from Charlton Heston's wife, did Musea run on one of our Covers?
Is one of my zine friends perhaps the Best Painter around?
Why did Dallas Luxury Magazine run a full page picture of me?
What were Inwood Box Office Concerts?
What did Drive in Movie Critic, Joe Bob Briggs say about Musea?
What happened when H. L. Hunt wanted to buy a photograph of himself for $10?
Why was I forced out of the Inwood Theater after working there for 24 years?
What did Maximum Rock n Roll say about the AACA logo?
Where did the Esquire Theater's Neon Painter's Palette end up?
Which unassuming Dallas writer/artist wrote the next Pascal's, Pensees?
How did Musea get in the center of a Dallas Morning News, Dallas Observer feud.
Who praised Mary Parker for sculptural reliefs from plumbing parts?
Which 12 By 12 musician recently had a single of his, sell on Ebay for $887.77?
What was Joe Christ like in person?
What musicians recorded a song of mine, then went on to national fame as a trio.
What does Musea know about Slack?
When does the Midnight Movie start?
Why did my fellow workers ask David Byrne for his autograph for me?
Which music engineer did I work with that had a Gold Record on her office wall?
What happened when a stage hand moved Ray Charles mike?
Was Morgan Fairchild beautiful and friendly in person?
Who seemed to need more approval, Joseph Heller, or Nora Ephron?
What guitar accessory does Elvis, Jimi Hendrix, and Hunkasaurus have in common?
What did Mickey Rooney say to me as he passed by at NorthPark?
Who are the five, Frida and Diego type couples, where both partners are fine artists?
Did Musea find a photograph of Cinderella?
Why did I go to Freddie King's house?
Who stole my zines at the first Art Revolution Festival - I really want to know!
Who was Sweater Vest, The Crazy Nurse, or the Popcorn Lady?
Why won't Willie Nelson's lawyers let him hear my song, The Ballad of Willie Nelson?
Why did the lawyers from Warner Brothers write me?
Why did I get a check from Greg Abbot for $13.88?
When was the last moment of modern art?
Which local guitar hero was sitting in my seat at the Paul McCartney concert?
And finally; how did this 8 page Musea 200th issue turn into Tom's Tome?
200th Issue - the PEOPLE Issue.
A celebration of indie artists featured in Musea.
An underground history of 25 years of Dallas arts.
(c) 2017 Tom Hendricks.
Musea is Tom Hendricks,
4000 Hawthorne #5, Dallas Tx. 75219.
Introduction: DEAR READER.
Chapter One: EDITOR ART.
Chapter Two: ZINES and ZINESTERS.
Chapter Three: RADIO
Chapter Four: BOOKSTORES and OTHER STOPS ACROSS THE CITY.
Chapter Five: The PHOTOGRAPHERS.
Chapter Six: The ARTISTS.
Chapter Seven: FILM PEOPLE and the INWOOD.
Chapter Eight: SPECIAL DALLAS PEOPLE and PLACES.
Chapter Nine: COLUMNISTS.
Chapter Ten: ART REVOLUTION FESTIVALS.
Chapter Eleven: XMAS STORIES.
Chapter Twelve: KIDS.
Chapter Thirteen: TV NETWORKS.
Chapter Fourteen: MUSICIANS.
Chapter Fifteen: ARCHITECTURE, THEATER, DANCE, and FASHION.
Chapter Sixteen: MEDIA.
Chapter Seventeen. The ART of LOVE, FIVE COUPLES.
Chapter Eighteen: BIOLOGY.
Chapter Nineteen: ONLINE.
Chapter Twenty: ADVOCATING for EVERYONE.
Index: The MUSEA VAULTS.
Coming up Next: WRITINGS IN SCIENCE and ...
Late! Late! Late,
like the Rabbit leading Alice!
Yes, yes, I know but
throw your watch away!
This ish of Musea
is worth the wait!
This 200th issue
is time to celebrate.
And what better way
then with 200 people,
all of them stars
in the Musea cluster.
This is the 200th issue of Musea, an arts and media zine that began in September 1992.
Dilemma! For months I could not decide what to write about, how to sum up these years, and how best to celebrate 200 issues of my zine, Musea.
Then it came to me all at once; #200 ... 200 people! I'll talk about 200 of the fabulous and fun people connected and covered in Musea.
At first I was worried that, though I could come up with 30 or 40 easily, how could I get to 100 let alone 200?
But soon it dawned on me (and how clever is the word dawn that it can mean both a rising sun, and the beginning of a wonderful idea,) that my Big List, First Best Music List of the Entire Net, by itself, listed over 200 solo musicians, and groups.
Then too there were the 80 plus zinesters and artists in the Zine Hall of Fame, many more musicians in the six 12 By 12 albums, hundreds of artists of all kinds at the four Art Revolution Festivals, hundreds of winners of the Musea Art Quiz, and countless artists listed in Musea's many Guides to the Arts.
No, 200 would be easy. Resisting the urge to go over 200 would be impossible!
READY? START HERE. Set your clock back to September 1992 when the first issue is released, a few hundred copies of a cut and paste, single page, legal sized sheet of paper with print on both sides. Musea had begun.
I've got lots of stories to tell with a little SCANDAL here and there, and a whole lot of GOSSIP everywhere! Ah, the art world has it all! - Art S Revolutionary.
MUSEA STARTS WITH EDITOR ART...
Chapter One: EDITOR ART.
Q. A Pen and Inkling for the arts!
Q. Please Fold, Handle, and Accumulate!
Q. Art with Craft!
Musea began in 1992 as a monthly zine to support and promote the best of indie artists and oppose the worst of corporate art.
The name is pronounced Myoo ZEE! uh.
I, Tom Hendricks am the editor, but to better make my point, and to have some fun, I called myself Art S. Revolutionary. That was the beginning of a number of pseudonyms. So the first person on our list of 200 is all the names of Editor Art!
Art S Revolutionary. Tom Hendricks, musician, painter, writer, etc.
Hunkasaurus and His Pet Dog Guitar. Tom and his 1964 Silvertone standard guitar.
Kat Keys. The name of my Cassio synthesizer keyboard.
Woody Stock. Resident hippie and author of the book Rating the 60's Concerts.
Crystal Ball. Resident psychic.
Paige Turner. Book and zine reviewer.
Pat Answers. In house researcher.
Moe Hawk. Punk music reporter.
Jennifer Ationex. Twenty Something expert.
Deacon Holy Go Rightly. Chaplain.
Carl A. Citizen. Man on the street.
Tommy. See Tommy Shorts issue.
Sayings of Editor Art. Editor Art S Revolutionary is always popping off about everything. More than one issue, of Musea is a collection of his sayings. Virtually all the quotes (Q.) in this issue are from Editor Art.
Just for Fun. Here are two anagrams for my name Tom Hendricks
Rocks the Mind
Mock, then rids.
For a quick, short, biography, please see Tom Hendricks entry in the online encyclopedia, Wikipedia.
Chapter Two: ZINES AND ZINESTERS.
Q. In the 60's everyone wanted to join a rock n roll group.
In the 90's everyone wanted to make a zine.
Q. Reading matters!
Q. All zinesters have the same blood type - Type-O.
Jason Cohen ran a book and video store across from Fair Park called Forbidden Books and Videos. It was there that I saw my first zines. What????, says I to myself.
Among the first crop of self published booklets (zines), I remember most, those of Robert W. Howington, a Fort Worth zinester. Everything about zines was new to me. Forbidden had a wire tree rack with an assortment. All were handmade, rough, raw, unedited, short, course and crude in spots, but also so fresh and alive! These were not like any published books I'd ever read. It was like reading a letter. All the zines were immediate, now, in the moment, and exciting in their unfiltered rants.
Detour. Howington used w whenever he wanted to say with. That has always stuck in my memory, even w all the years gone by!
During this time my head was flooded with ideas connected to changes and reforms in all the arts. I knew unless something changed, no musician, painter, or writer, like me would ever have a fair chance. As I learned more about zines, (zine is pronounced 'ZEEN, as in the end of the word maga-ZINE,) I learned that thousands were being made across the country.
I decided to start my own. It would be about the arts and it would cover ideas for changes in the arts. It would tell what I'm doing, and help promote others that I thought were doing great things. It would call out corporate art when it got so inflated with greed that no quality could stand in its way. I would join the zine movement. I would rant!
Q. Direction on the bottle of Zine Shampoo. After Blathering, Print, and Release!
Q. Zines, at the corner of Cut and Paste.
I found myself knee deep in a golden age of literature. Though indie pubs had been made since Thomas Paine, there was a real upswing, resurgence, and revolution, in zine making in the late 80's. The technology of desktop publishing changed all, - that and Kinko copy stores popping up everywhere. (Hi to Tina at Kinkos.).
From the late 80's on, most anyone with access to a copy store and a word processor could type text, print it, and paste it, next to (or over) a grainy b/w copy of a photo, and make a master copy.
Then he/she could run off 1 to ? copies. Thousands? Hardly! More like 30-50 for most zines, maybe 100-500 if it was a big production with one editor and lots of helpers working together, or at the top end a thousand copies, if it was a fancy group of zinesters and a glossy cover!
Zines were born. What did they talk about? What didn't they talk about? Here are some favorites out of the thousands that were being made.
Reptiles of the Mind. This was a zine out of Knoxville, Tennessee, put out by Kat Jaz. Like most of the people in this issue, I have never met Kat, but I think I know her through her zine writing. Also her zine was one of those that was a hub for zinesters. Factsheet 5, #57, called Kat's zine the Most popular zine in the US. Big praise but well deserved.
Her friendly chatty zine covered this and that and invited readers to get involved, to mail her what they thought, and to share what was going on. She also had a humorous style, that was easy going and easy to like. I discovered many of my first favorite zines from those featured or reviewed in the pages of ROTM.
Time to back track a little and explain a little about zines and how they work. Zines are mostly made by a single person and are free to the public. They are almost all made underground and outside of any mainstream distribution channels. So how do other people know about a zine and how do zinesters distribute their zine?
First, copies go to friends and family, then some go to favorite outlets like a local book or record shop that will allow space to display them. But then what?
Zinesters solved that problem by mail. Zinesters would mail their zine to other zinesters in exchange for that other person's zine, or in trade. Soon each zinester would have a mailing list of zines that he liked and that in turn liked his work.
To further support each other, a common practice of zinesters was to take some of the space of their zine, and acknowledge and or review the zines that they got in the mail. Then that zine's readers would know about many more zines.
Finally as these zine networks sprung up, they seemed to coalesce into a few zines that only reviewed all the other zines. These became the top dog of readership. Most every zinester sent their zines to these review zines for review. That meant that a big review zine could be receiving thousands of zines for review!
Zines ranged from a one page drunken rant, to a concerted effort by 10 or more people. They could range from talking about punk music, to a personal history of favorite snacks, to ???
The major zine review zine and the largest, was Factsheet 5, though it was not the only one by any means. Later, when FS5 stopped publishing, much of the slack was taken up by Zine World that I reviewed for; and Xerography Debt, the main zine review zine still going, run by Davida Gypsy Breier.
Davida Gypsy Breier. Davida started XD in 1999. She is a well known zinester, and sometimes actor, from the Baltimore area. Her zine review zine is still a hub to many other zinesters, and she is still active in the zine community. She calls XD the review zine with latent perzine tendencies, - Perzine, means a personal zine, or a zine written like a personal journal.
Factsheet 5. Mike Gunderloy, and R. Seth Friedman. Mike Gunderloy began FS5 in 1982. It grew into a mammoth zine, and surely one of the most influential. Just look at any issue and you will see how vast the zine world was! Gunderloy was editor from 82-91. Soon R. Seth Friedman took over and ran it from 1992-1998. Then it closed.
How these two did what they did is beyond me. Imagine your mail stuffed with every size of publication each day for years. And not all of them were about favorite snacks! Some of the zines they got were x-rated, some extreme in political rants, and some were no more than hate speech on paper. Then they and the other staff of reviewers that Gunderloy or Friedman had to find, would write a review saluting the best zines, while being honest about the rest.
Beyond the review, FS5 would give the zine info: it's address, price, zinester's name, if free to prisoners (ftp) a common practice, if age statement was required, etc. Then of course, the zinester would move the next day, or they wouldn't send in the price info with the zine, etc. A lot could go wrong!
Imagine Mike or Seth and staff, doing all that work, getting very little money or thanks in return, knowing that the craziest zinesters would hate you no matter what you say, and knowing that tomorrow the mail will bring more of the same.
Though both burned out from the job, I still thank them for their service to the entire zine community.
Detour. Personally FS5 never really liked or disliked Musea in their reviews. Mostly they just said what it was about, and the ordering info, and little else.
Maximum Rock n Roll. FS5 was not alone. MRR, a San Francisco zine, started by Tim Yohannan, is about punk music, and it is still running. Pick up a hefty, printed on newsprint, copy and you'll find a phone book (remember those) worth of info, opinions, and reviews. (See MRR's comment about zine Musea later.) There is not only city scene music reports, and columnists comments, but many many many (where do all these bands come from?) music reviews, and some zine reviews too.
Global Mail. Ashley Parker Owens, Michael Dittman. This zine covered mail art. Along side the zine explosion were thousands of mail artists, artists that exchanged art works in the mail. Most often they would make art on stiff paper the size of a postcard and mail it out. Often the art would be gathered together in a gallery show. GM was their hub telling the artists of gallery shows, mail art news, and who was looking for what kind of art.
Two notable people ran Global Mail. Ashley Parker Owens out of Chicago was the first editor. She is a noted zinester, that even did a zine on how to make zines called Technical Tips for Zine Making. The other main editor was Michael Dittman. He did the zine Curriculum Vitae. See later for his interview of Art S Revolutionary.
Fort Worth Zines. Robert W. Howington, Kevin E. White, Bryan Massey III. There were a few zines from Dallas other than Musea over the years, but the best in my opinion, were from Fort Worth! FW had a group of writers that loved Bukowski and wrote in a tough raw style. Here is a quote from Todd Moore that sums up their style, I want a poem to be hard as a bullet.
The three included Robert W. Howington who loved Bukowski but hated his government job. He wrote all kinds of zine rants, poems, and articles. Next was Kevin E. White or Weasel Boy, and his zine Psychotex. Kevin was also gifted at graphics and helped me on the AACA logo. Finally there was Bryan Massey III another fine writer in that style. The first two became columnists for Musea, while all three were featured in my pages. There style of white trash poetry crossed every line, and at it's most extreme, could be downright violent, and stalker crazy. But it was also fine writing that still deserves the major recognition it has never gotten. Hey it's not too late. These three put Fort Worth on the lit map!
I once met Howington and Massey at the Inwood Theater where I worked. I knew the two were coming to Dallas for a film, and I also knew their writings. I didn't know how crazy, strange, or violent, they would be. But in person both were sedate and somewhat shy, though Massey had a look that was very intense, and scary, like a person with a temper that should never be set off!
Dallas Zines. Dallas zines and zinesters included Contexas, Meat Scientist, Lil Rhino Gazette (music zine out of Arlington), zines by Sioux Z B, and Deep Sheet.
Tim Kibler. Deep Sheet was a zine by Tim Kibler who may have been homeless. Don't know for sure. His zine told what was happening in Deep Ellum, a historic music neighborhood in the 80's with tiny clubs, music shops, galleries, cafes, and car repair places. Kibler was doing his zine in the 90's for the clubs that were left standing. He would report what was happening and the latest gossip at the bars he went to. He would always include a page with ads for those same bars. My guess is that all this got him some free drinks and maybe some money - enough to print a few copies. Deep Sheet came out once a week.
Clebo. Dallas was also the home of Clebo. This big friendly, motorcycle riding guy, with a booming voice, is my age and grew up, like me, in Tyler, 90 miles east of Dallas. I see or hear about him in all kinds of places here in Dallas. He started Metamorphosis Records, a small used record store, played music with assorted musicians, and gained notice for his poetry performances, and leading a poetry slam team to a national win.
Zine World. Doug Holland, Jerianne Thompson. When Factsheet Five closed for good, Doug Holland from San Francisco, started Zine World, a smaller version. Holland, if that is his real name, was quite a character in the world of zines before he started ZW. His zine, Pathetic Life, was a perzine about his life, trying to make a living, and getting by. His perzine was brutally honest in everything it said. He often would talk about responses to his classified ad, Do anything for $X per hour? Example he got a job shaving a guys back!
His idea for Zine World was to do a zine review zine but with more tough honesty than there was in FS5. His first contact with Musea was in response to an article I had written where I mentioned that I got an ISBN number for one of my books. He opposed the ISBN number on books as a way of limiting speech. I found his comments thoughtful and printed them in Musea. When it came time to find ZW reviewers, he contacted me, and I jumped at the chance. I continued reviewing for ZW till it closed in 2012.
Doug would send each reviewer a packet of zines to review within a certain time limit. We could also review zines we had received on our own.
I remember his response to my first submitted reviews. He said I was being too nice. I'd have to get tough and be more honest or I'd have to go! So I did and got better reviews for doing it that way. I learned a lot from Doug. Many of my ideas for my goal of a major online review site, were built on his ideas for Zine World reviews.
He led ZW through issues from 1996-2000. Like other zine review zine editors, he got burned out by so much work for so little revenue, help, and support. Jerianne Thompson took over editing duties until 2012 when ZW did it's last issue.
During all that time I reviewed countless zines. Some were political tracts so hard lined that they'd loose their audience on page two. Or they were music zines that would interview and praise hundreds of punk bands that no one else had ever heard of. Some were weird zines about favorite candies, Asian films, alt lifestyles, TV shows; or medley zines, zines that talked about a lot of different things.
Musea issue #132 contains my favorite reviews from those I wrote for ZW. Plus I also wrote and recorded a song called Zine World, available on my 150 song boxed set. Here is a line from the lyrics: Take your world with a grain of 'alt!
Overall I was honored to be a part of Zine World, and I think we helped discover and spotlight a lot of great work.
Gossip. Stephanie Webb did a humor zine called, Crawfish out of the midwest somewhere. I somehow introduced her to Doug Holland. I think I wrote to him and told him she would be a great reviewer for ZW. Their correspondence took a romantic turn, she went to SF to be with Doug, and they became an item. Both were thankful to me.
Later they broke up, and neither was thankful to me! But hey, neither event was my doing. I was just caught in the middle, two times!
My three favorite names for zines are:
1. Heads Up Penny.
2. Something There is That Doesn't Love a Mall.
3. This Space for Rant.
Here are six more of the best zines and zinesters featured in Musea. Also see the online Zine Hall of Fame.
Franetta L. McMillian. Her zines included Sweet Jesus, and Lilly on the Beach. McMillian writes extraordinary rich prose and poetry that's got the works; great characters, stories, poems, essays, even a sermon now and then. The mood is often dark with multi overtones, making it all complex and fascinating reading. She is also known for her photos, art work, and recordings. (Maryland.)
Gregory Hischak. His zine was Farm Pulp. I became a typographer first, and then a writer. He mixed a great looking publication, always printed on expensive papers with fold outs, that were a sly satire on that issue's subject. (Seattle.)
Stephano. His perzine was The Opera Vagabond, about his life as an Opera singer. During much of this time, he toured as a singer in Phantom of the Opera.
Rev. Richard J. Mackin. He was known as the Consumer Defense Corporate Poet. Much of his work involved letters to corporations about some, usually absurd, concern he had about their product. His letters were great, funny, and clever, but the stiff, mechanical, corporate letters he got in return turned out to be often more funny. He would print his letter and next to it either the company response, or a stamped NO RESPONSE. (Boston.)
Fred Woodworth. Woodworth is more an independent publisher than a zinester. He owns the printing equipment, repairs it when it breaks, and prints up his zines. They include The Match, advocating Anarchism, with his well thought out reasons why; The Mystery and Adventure Series Review, a zine about kids series books from the past; and other chapbooks on assorted subjects he feels strongly about. He began printing in 1969 and is still going strong. He is against computers, and is adamant that supporters for his free publications, send cash, no checks. He also often mails free extra books to anyone wanting them. Woodworth has become, over the decades an underground institution. He is also notable for some of the longest letters from readers sections. (Tucson.)
The MaKofsky Sisters. Serena and younger sister Jenny wrote the charming and funny zine, Have You Seen the Dog Lately. This was always a treat to get in the mail. My favorite feature was the comic strip, The Beats, featuring Bart and Beaulah, two beret wearing beatniks dressed in black and almost always standing in the same pose. The art didn't change from panel to panel, but the word balloons did. What the two pondered about, was always fun and usually ended with a clever kicker response.
Sadly Jenny was killed in an auto accident. In an instant everything ended, all that fun, all that intelligence, all that charm. (Oakland.)
Keith and Rosemary Walker. This couple does Fanzine Fanatique, a quarterly English zine that reviews other zines. A typical edition includes four pages of capsule reviews of fanzines and small press publications, including science fiction, fantasy, horror, poetry, Wiccan, feminist, comix, and anything else they receive from all over the world. How long have they been doing this? First issue was June 1972!!! (England.)
I also found two notable poets, and a few one of a kinds, along the way.
John Grey. He wrote many short, very strong and beautiful, but dark poems. I always wondered if he would loose his poetic gift if he wrote a happy poem! (New York.)
Dr. Robert Janus Berry. Somehow the doctor had heard about Musea and sent me his poems. I liked them for their charm and beauty and printed them on the Musea website. (Malaysia.)
Sticker Guy. Sticker Guy was a person who would send anybody that contacted him a short roll of stickers that were always the same. They showed a black alien head with a red line through them. I still have part of a roll of them.
Paul Weiman. Paul, also known as White Boy, stole a bus - yes a big city bus - and wrote about it. When caught and convicted, his sentence was: 2 and 1/2 to 15 years, bargained down to 2 months in the nuthouse and 42 shock treatments. (Albany.)
Media Rant. This people issue isn't all wonderful people. There are some true negatives in the arts. Here is the first rant about people that I don't like, and in this case the rant is for zines and against all the media. Here is why.
Zines were the bulk of writing and publishing in the 90's in the US. It was the best writing in the country. It was a golden age of literature during a period when mainstream publishing was in the doldrums. Yet none of that mattered. The media gatekeepers refused to review zines, they refused to celebrate the new type of publishing, and finally they did everything they could to wipe zines from publishing history!
Seldom were zines ever even mentioned in the mainstream media, and never were they reviewed! We all fear the police state depicted in 1984, but what if it was more insidious, and less blatant? What if history was re-written to suit only corporate writers? What if Big Brother worked by marginalizing every writer but those sanctioned by a few big publishing corporations? That is what happened. The most basic fact checking of newspapers, and media reports, will prove it. We can't let so few rewrite 90's history to suit their profits.
Let's go one step further. Zines were more than just good writing. The best zinesters also made the books that they wrote, copied, and distributed.
So, with the best of zines, we ended up with not only great writing, but art books. Zinesters went way beyond what mainstream authors were doing. They couldn't just turn in a manuscript to a publishing company. They had to design their book too. The best zines did all that very well. They were both filled with original writing, and were creative works of publishing art.
Then too the style of writing was so incredibly fresh and honest. No mainstream novelist or journalist was doing that. Not even journal writers were matching this honesty in their autobiographies. That is why virtually the only reports on zines during those years, that you did hear about, were those that were being prosecuted for what they wrote - too honest!
Zines also covered every aspect of life from the biggest problems of the world down to the tiniest minutiae; from the most obscene points of view to the most rosy.
Finally I'll add this. Zines were the last golden age of literature before writing went online. That's real history. That is what happened. That is what thousands of writers did. That was a golden age of literature. So why does most of the world not know this? Good question. Maybe it's time you asked too!
ZHOF. For all the reasons above, I decided to start a Zine Hall of Fame. This features, in my opinion, the cream of the zine crop. There may be zines and zinesters I missed - we can fix that - but these are surely solid choices that deserve recognition.
Online you can find it on the Musea Website, as well as Zinewiki. There are 80+ inductees that I thought were superb in writing skills, book design, content, etc. etc.
I hope to continue this at a later time by turning it over to others to induct more great zinesters.
Through eight different issues of Musea, I listed new inductees into the Zine Hall of Fame, and I talked about why I thought they were so good. When that issue was printed, I would send the new inductees both a copy of it and a suitable-for-framing, certificate of merit.
Nothing sums up this zine section better than the response I got from Ruel Gaviola, editor of the zine review zine Amusing Yourself To Death, after he got his certificate of merit showing his induction into the Zine Hall of Fame. Here is an excerpt. #72
On behalf of the AYTD crew, I'd like to thank you for inducting AYTD into the Zine Hall of Fame. When I opened the envelope at the post office and saw the official certificate from the Hall, I couldn't contain my excitement and showed it to the old lady next to me.
"AYTD's in the Zine Hall of Fame!" I exclaimed.
"What's a zine?" she asked.
WMZ, We Make Zines, the website. This quick update. The main zine cite online is We Make Zines. It was run by Krissy from Ponyboy Press. But due to the excess jump in website costs etc., she told zinesters that she would have to shut down the site. Since the word went out, other zinesters have come to the rescue. The site will continue. Musea is on WMZ, I support them, and I wish them the best.
Mailing List. There are a few people that have been on my Musea mailing list for years and deserve special thanks. They include many relatives, some of the people already mentioned and: Karl Wenclas (founder of the ULA, Underground Literary Alliance,) Malok (collage artist), Blair Ewing (poet), Fred Argoff, Pat Simonelli, Clint Marsh, James M Nordlund, Heath Row, Vernicious Knid, (zinesters,) Fred and Mary Ellen Holt (photo book makers,) and Marci Anderson (Musea collector.)
Chapter Three: RADIO.
Q. Here is a short list of Dallas Radio Stations by call letters:
KRUD, KRAP, KOMA, K-PUT, KRAS, KUKU.
Dallas radio is horrible, a corporate wasteland of sound alike, fake hits announced by robotic voices, that is no more than filler for 15+ minute, blocks of ads.
I still wonder how they can get away with that - taking revenues out of Dallas but never giving anything back. Corporate Radio, why should Dallas buy what you advertise if you hate our music and culture so much that you block it from your station? Why are you here?
Earlier I had held out hope for some stations on the fringe. Sadly nothing ever came out of that in the two and half decades of Musea. Really - nothing for me or any other musician I knew and liked. Let's take a look at the players in Dallas Radio.
KNON. KNON, The Voice of the People. I even had a show on this radio station. Sunday afternoons in the mid 80's, I and Kinney Littlefield would host an art talk show called, State of the Arts. Yet as much as KNON trumps up support for local music, they have never helped me or any musician I've known, in decades.
Their shows are so isolated and each has such a narrow focus or format that unless you are a musician that fits their formula and are in one of those tiny cliques, you are out. We deserve better from KNON. We deserve a single contact person for all music, and some daily programs with wider tastes; shows that can showcase all kinds of music from all the other shows. That way the station could be more than each separate DJ's mixed tape program.
ACORN. Though I have strong words to challenge my old station KNON to improve, I would also like to say some strong words in support of ACORN. ACORN, the group that had a lot to do with getting KNON on the air stands for the Association of Community Organizations for Reform Now. Their sole purpose was to help and be an advocate for low income people. Part of that was signing up low income voters, something they had done for 40 years. I think that is what led to their enemies setting them up with the 2009 scandal that closed them down. They had high ideals. They worked for the poor. They did not deserve the injustice that they received from a scandal that proved to have no merit, and that forced them into Chapter 7 liquidation.
KNTU and KTCU, college radio. These two college radio stations are not that supportive for local music; KNTU at the University of North Texas, my alma mom; and KTCU at Texas Christian University. Both play all kinds of music. You would think that college radio stations run by college kids, would be interested in new music, exciting music, creative music. Cut to the chase - you would be wrong - no support from either of them. Both need to fix that.
KERA, an NPR station, and KXT, their sister music station. Long ago I, other local musicians, and most music lovers, gave up on mainstream radio. The best hope for radio was, if none of the above, KXT a no ad music station connected with the NPR station.
Yet somehow this no ad music station came out with all the same problems as the corporate music stations. We wanted good radio that would include local music. They gave us an AAA formula station ( they call it adult album alternative, I call it average, average, average.) When a station plays music that has to fit a formula, you won't hear music that stands out.
Yes they play some local music. But none of it stands out in any way - that seems to be one of their main rules for airplay. The music is bland, generic, and lackluster. The DJ's are blanched of personality. The station has little energy or excitement.
But the problem goes further because KUT in Austin is the same mess, and other stations and radio shows connected to NPR are the same. Even their online music coverage on the NPR website, is all the same generic music. So let's look at NPR.
NPR. National Public Radio is now playing a major role in the music industry. They are the main site online, that people look to for new music that is not corporate teen pop. They don't have ads, so you'd think they were open to new music. What they do have is corporate sponsors, a narrow format, revenue sharing, and music people that don't like creativity! And it shows.
Let's start with the hard news here. When I looked at their website, I noticed that NPR often ran a sponsor ad for a musician on the same page as an article about that musician. I also saw that most musicians featured in a sponsor ad got coverage in an online article. I began to check on this and asked the NPR Ombudsman about it. The Ombudsman challenged me to produce a screen grab showing the same artist in both the article on the page, and the sponsor ad on the page. I found 60! They finally asked me to stop sending them!
The upshot of this controversy is that two NPR ombudsman have challenged NPR on my behalf, and twice NPR has responded with dismissive, vague, and weak, excuses like, its a fluke (60 times?), or it's a tech problem that we can't fix (doubtful.)
Then to further fuel the fire, I pointed out that when listeners bought music from an artist they heard on NPR through the NPR online site, NPR would get revenue. I call that a kick back. They call it revenue sharing. What if a musician like me was against revenue sharing? Would we ever get played on NPR? So far no musician against revenue sharing has ever been featured on the NPR music website.
Finally NPR never talked about anything new in music, always supported sound alike music, and eventually blocked me from even commenting on their music page in the comments section. They have since eliminated all comment pages!
Look, NPR has an enviable position where it could celebrate the best music out there. Instead it promotes corporate music for cash back. And it ends up with generic music that pleases no one.
I have challenged them in articles such as Why Isn't Revenue Sharing, Payola? and NPR, Leader in Music Promotion, but is it Fair?. I have also challenged them with a 200 Song Music Challenge. Here is how that challenge would work.
I am challenging NPR to a music challenge, “Trendy versus Indy”, my Big List of 200 songs versus ANY 200 songs from NPR. This is the biggest music challenge in history!!! I will suggest a list of 200 songs in all genres, and NPR can try to match it with any 200 song list of new music that they can devise. Then without telling the audience which is which, we will let listeners choose with their ears which music they prefer.
As with all creative and fun radio ideas, NPR gave no response, and quickly dismissed it. I would think thousands would love to hear the challenge - still.
WRR. WRR, the classical radio station, is owned by the City of Dallas. So of course it will promote Dallas classical music and Dallas classical musicians right? Unless you have skipped everything in this radio section, you will know the answer, and it is wrong!
I advocated WRR to play local classical music. They countered with the fact that it's all atonal and weird. I countered by saying I wrote classical music and my music is very melodic. I added that I knew other gifted Dallas classical composers and their music was not atonal and weird either. Things have changed since the 1920's.
My arguments reached city hall, and they put some pressure on WRR, who decided to do a Sunday show featuring homegrown classical music.
You should know that Sunday air time on radio is when most local music is dumped - no one listens then and few ads are sold, so how can the station loose. Least that is their jaded view.
So which local classical composers did WRR feature first ? They searched out weird atonal work, featured them alone, and to no one's surprise they quickly lost listeners and canceled the show.
Detour. I am very proud of my bagatelles, short piano pieces composed in the classic style with usually three parts, a major part, a minor middle part, and a repeat of the first major part. I collected some of my best ones on a cassette and brought them to the program director at - I think it was - WRR (it was either WRR or KERA when they had some classical music - I forget). The then director said he would listen to it and get back to me. I called about two weeks later, and he said it was on his desk, but he hadn't gotten to listen to it. Now three decades later I'm thinking, any day now right? Someone has a somewhat historic gold mine of original classical music on a cassette, and they are clueless!
Let's flip the coin and look at some good people connected to radio. Here are a few notables.
Ron Chapman. He was the biggest name in Dallas radio for decades. I casually met or walked by him a few times. Believe it or not, once was at the Republican National Convention when it was here in Dallas. I was there as a reporter for KNON radio, and he was there for his station, KVIL.
He always seemed as personable off mike as on. He was the radio leader for morning drive time for many, many years.
But the reason he is on this list is because of what he did on air. He asked listeners to send in $20 no questions asked and they did by the bucketful. He later explained that it was for a charity. But can you imagine any radio personality having that kind of listener trust today?
Ron Chapman was also the host of the short lived Sump'n Else, TV show, , a Dallas take off of TV's Bandstand, filmed at NorthPark Mall. Note that the show featured many local musicians - no TV show does that now.
Detour. Some piano playing by me may have actually been heard on Sump'n Else. I helped Doug Rhone (see later) and his group Gladstone at Robin Hood Brians Studio in Tyler with a small piano part, when they made a recording of their latest song to lip sync on the show.
Bud Bushardt. One could call Bushardt Mr Radio and no one would argue. He did everything in Dallas radio including working with Ron Chapman on Sump'n Else. But my reason for him making this list is that for more than 10 years he hosted a wonderful Sunday night oldies show on KVIL where he was known as a musicologist!
KAAM. This current AM station may be the last with good music in the area, and it has it only in spots; in the morning, and evening, with infomercials during the weekdays and weekends. The music mix is open and good, and whoever is choosing the tunes, picks them by quality - very rare nowadays.
Ranger Rita. Besides being a long time reader of Musea, Ranger has a fine oldies show on KNON called the Magic Time Warp. She is an expert on rock n roll from its formation to the British Invasion. Her offbeat voice doesn't sound like a standard radio voice, so it stands out as being real, and that's a plus for me. Rita has also written a growing up in the fifties, novel, where she included a play list of songs for each chapter, from the great rock n roll soundtrack!
John Henry Challenge. Finally I end this chapter with the John Henry Challenge, and how I was duct taped to a chair by a shock jock!
The John Henry Challenge was simple, I challenged mainstream radio to play a new hit, and I would match it with a local Dallas indie record. Then the audience could vote for their favorite.
Shock Jock, Russ Martin heard about it, and took me up on it. I went to the studio. After explaining the challenge and talking to me a bit, he played first my song Dallas, This Town Lies In the Future. I chose a 12 By 12 record I had made that was actually about Dallas music. He then challenged it with Jade, a new song at that time from Aerosmith.
He took phone calls. His loyal supporters dissed my song and voted for his offering, and I lost. Then on air, as punishment for loosing, he pretended he was taping up my hands and mouth. With hand gestures he make it clear that it was just a bit. He then ask me for my website, to allow me to promote that, and went to a break. During the break two of his guys/goons loosely wound some duct tape around me and the office chair I was in, slid me into the elevator, and pushed the down button!
Chapter Four: BOOKSTORES AND OTHER STOPS ACROSS THE CITY.
Musea, at its peaks was printed monthly in runs of 500 copies an issue, and was distributed to 15 places across the city. Now it is available online, through my mailing list, or in a hard copy at three places; Lucky Dog Books, Half Price Books, and Curiosities.
Time to salute all the small businesses and their owners that carried Musea. Most were indie shops, galleries, and cafes, long gone. Here are the ones I remember.
Main Street News, Inwood Theater, Direct Hits Records, City Java, Last Beat Records, Chumley's Bar, Paperbacks Plus now Lucky Dog Books, VVV Records, Bar of Soup (a bar and laundromat combined!), Shakespeare Books, Exposition Corner Deli, Gray Matters Gallery, Forbidden Books and Videos, Poor David's Pub, The MAC, Mckinny Avenue Contemporary Art Center, The Major Theater, Half Price Books, Curiosities Antiques, Club Dada, Stout McCourt Gallery, Fallout Lounge, 500 X Gallery, and Henry Street Pizza.
Speaking of Henry Street Pizza, when I delivered my copies of Musea to this Deep Ellum Cafe, I staid for lunch. After one visit, they had memorized my order, a deep dish pepperoni - the best deep dish I've tasted. The place had a friendly family running it, great food, and big colorful art on the bare cement walls. It is missed.
Favorite bookstores include these.
Lucky Dog Books and the Musea Reading Fund. This small chain of indie bookstores, previously called Paperbacks Plus, is run by John and Marquetta. The one I go to has a nice atmosphere, great staff, (hi to Brian and Eve), and a good selection.
They sell their books for either half of the price on the book, or if you use store credit you get half off the half off price. Selling them your books gets book credit and or cash.
One day I was there talking to John about the excess credit I had built up at the store. Most of this was from used books that my father gave me to trade in. It was more credit than I needed or could use. John suggested a reading fund. What a great idea.
So The Musea Reading Fund was set up. Here are the rules. People who are buying any type of classic - classic book, classic rock album, classic mystery, classic comic, classic movie, etc. can use the Musea Reading Fund. They will not only get half off the original price, but another half off that price from the Musea Reading Fund. So a book priced at $4 will now cost $1.
Over the years many have used it. And some others that had excess credit, or were moving away from the area and no longer needed their store credit, have generously contributed to it! It has grown to around $4,000.
You reading this, please use The Musea Reading Fund, at any Lucky Dog Store. Just ask. Tell them I sent you.
Forbidden Books and Video. Jason Cohen ran this store across from Fair Park. It was a great place for offbeat underground videos, zines, and other indie stuff. At one time it even had a small art gallery in the back room. Add to that used records, old magazines, and great incense wafting through the store.
I always loved this place. Jason knew his stock, so I often asked him to help me with some of my best of the year, lists. He helped Musea with, Best Comics of the Year, or Best Videos of the Year, more than once. Now he is running Curiosities an offbeat antique shop full of curious finds.
Joe Christ. Speaking of forbidden! Joe Christ (Linhart) the notable underground filmmaker and musician, lived in Dallas for a while upsetting everyone with his religious heresy, outrageousness, indie films, and punk music. He was known for titles that included Sex, Blood and Mutilation (with women cutting themselves up with razors), Acid is Groovy - Kill the Pigs, Speed Freaks With Guns, and That's Just Wrong! He also led a band called Joe Christ and the Healing Faith, and ran for Texas Governor under the slogan Christ is the Answer in '86.
I had met him. I'd seen him around and we'd talked. He was extremely likable, supportive of what I was doing, and friendly to me; the exact opposite of his public persona - really, a very likable soft spoken guy.
Half Price Books . This is the biggest used bookstore chain in the country. Ken Gjemre and Pat Anderson started it in Dallas in 1972. Their flagship store near NorthPark Mall, is huge, about the size of a Target, and a favorite of mine. Hi to all the staff that I've gotten to know there and all the crew at the in store cafe, Black Forest Bakery.
Online Book Stores. Strictly Personal: I now have six books streaming at I-Books, Amazon Books, Barnes & Noble, Kobo, Copia, eSentral, Scribd, Baker & Taylor, Ciando (Germany), Gardners (Britain), and EBSCO (libraries). Check them out for some fun reads. Here are my six books with a review excerpt for each.
1. LIBRARY PLANET. Sci-fi .
Library Planet is hauntingly beautiful, and the author's use of language and imagery throughout the work is inspired. This story is part fantasy, part fable, and totally awesome; and it's most highly recommended. Wow! This is breathtakingly good. Bravo! - Jack Magnus.
2. CENDRILLON, the True Story of Cinderella.
Tom Hendricks uses a unique historical perspective to bring new life to the tale of Cinderella.... Hidden within the story are lessons about love, loss and acceptable behavior, not to mention the definition of true beauty ... Cendrillon: The True Story of Cinderella is a delightful version of a favorite fairy tale. - Melinda Hills.
3. PORTRAITS. A Novel of Art, Artists, and the Art Revolution.
Yes, at the heart of Portraits is a love story, a love triangle, but its soul delves deeper into a layered plot that draws out a more widespread implication: that art is the axis of all things beautiful, significant, and real. - Jamie Michele.
4. TEN SHORT AND SHORT-SHORT PLAYS.
For those of us readers who enjoy short works of fiction, author and
playwright Tom Hendricks has provided us with an intriguing new entry in
the field. Ten Short and Short-Short Plays is exactly that, a compendium
of ten finely worked plays that can each be read in a very short period of
time. From a play featuring two bewitching wood nymphs, to one based
on a classic ballet, to yet another featuring two porcelain collectibles
dueling it out on a mantle, each feature is certainly unique, creative and
highly entertaining. - Chris Fischer .
5. DOWNTOWN WITH THE BOOK OF RENOWN or ?. Teen mystery.
Downtown With the Book of Renown: Question Mark, sparkles with
excitement and energy as the two adventurers travel downtown in search
of treasure. The reader is privy to the enhanced effects their enthusiasm
lends to even the most prosaic everyday scenes witnessed from the
windows of a public bus, and one can't help but get more and more
involved as they near the spot marked X on the map. - Jack Magnus.
6. WRITINGS IN SCIENCE. A History of the Future. Sci-fi.
(See full reviews on this newly released, Sci-fi novel in the back pages.)
Chapter Five: The PHOTOGRAPHERS.
The first lesson I learned as a small publisher was this: Put a photo on the cover or no one will pick up a copy!
From that point on, I searched out great photographers for my cover photos. Very few issues did not have a first rate black and white photo on the cover. Here are some of my favorite photographers.
Phillip Slattery. He made wonderful landscape photos. Among the fine photos I printed is one on the cover of #70. It showed a well lit facade of novel architectural details. I loved it. Still do. The issue ran. A reader later pointed out a small detail, I had printed the photo upside down!
Stephen E. Holland. He did landscapes too. A favorite of mine was from #20 where he super imposed a sky of lit clouds over a row of doors. Heavenly and inspiring!
AfterImage Gallery. Ben Breard started this all photo gallery in Dallas in 1971. It is one of the oldest all photo galleries in the country. Breard has graciously allowed me to reprint photos from his promotional post cards. These photos have added a lot to the quality of my covers.
My favorite was by Lydia Clarke Heston, yes the wife of the actor. Her photo, At the Puppet Show, Spain 1961, doesn't show the puppets, but instead shows the kids reaction to the puppets with all their faces lit up with wonder and suspense at the action they are watching - a real delight.
David Francis Duncan. Duncan worked at Afterimage, and he supplied a few photos too. They all seemed to be of very beautiful brunettes! Worth searching those back issues!
Shots. Loosely connected with Afterimage Gallery was the photo zine called Shots, the Independent and Reader Supported Journal of Photography, now out of Minneapolis. Since 1986 this photography zine has focused on the best of black and white photos from across the world.
There have been three editors of Shots. Each deserves mention for their dedication to this publication. First there was Dan Price, a fine artists/writer known for the zine, Moonlight Chronicles, a travel perzine full of his delightful illustrations, Robert Owen, and now Russell Joslin. Joslin loves to feature interviews of key photographers. Through the years he has interviewed over 150 of them in the pages of Shots.
Next, two specific Musea photos of note.
Issue #63 featured a cover photo of the Painter's Palette neon sign originally from the Esquire Theater, a lovely movie theater in my neighborhood. After it was torn down the neon painter's palette was saved and taken to Las Colinas. The photo is from the book Dallas Arcana, by Melanie Pruit and Michael Helsem. See later for more on this artistic couple.
Issue #37, the third anniversary issue featured a photo of mine taken at the Inwood Theater. It was taken in the back room, off the concession stand. It shows the back of a woman in a plaid jacket, in front of a wall of circuit breakers and cleaning supplies. She has her hands out in a ta da! type motion, her head turned with an engaging smile. Though I've forgotten her name, I do remember she was a Leo, her photo is charming, and she stands out as an animated spirit in the humdrum, minimum wage, world around her.
The Rest. Most of the recent photos I have used in Musea are by unknown photographers. I began to peruse, then search out, old black and white photos at antique malls and flea markets. Sometimes the photographer or the photo studio was listed on the back, most often they were not and the credits would read, Photographer Unknown.
100 Years Ago In Musea. I often wondered who the people in these antique photos were and what happened later in their lives. I even started a Musea column called 100 years ago in Musea, where I would take a photo that I liked, and create my own history around it with some connection to Musea - if Musea had really been in existence for over a 100 years. Some were funny, some were bittersweet.
Example; the photo shows 7 kids of assorted ages with most having stares of terror on their faces. The caption read:
100 Years Ago In Musea. Our first art class, Learning the Basics of Drawing with Mrs Felder, is a little afraid of that black box camera gadget with it's gun powder flash - Puff! November 22, 1898.
Hunkasaurus and PDG Photos. Finally I'd like to mention many of the people who took pictures of me playing music.
To help promote my music I would welcome anyone who wanted to, to take a photo of me playing in my Box Office Concerts. I would sing and play my guitar in the glass booth, ticket selling, bump out, at the classic Inwood Theater.
Two in house workers did some of my favorites. Issue #77 featured photos by Jessica Cruise and Mye Hoang, both assistant managers at the time. More about Mye later.
I was also featured in the upscale Dallas fashion magazine called Modern Luxury Magazine, one of the few media that ever did cover me or my music! Strange to think that this high tone magazine where everything was either an immaculate clothed model, a designer space, or a trendy dish; was more interested in me than the daily and the weekly combined! Modern Luxury sent out a fine photographer named Terri Granger who got a few wonderful color photos of me playing. Modern Luxury published one of the photos in a full page spread with caption. I later used the same photo for my 4th CD.
David McGhee. Finally there is the gifted David McGhee. Somehow we met through Facebook. I asked if he would photograph me playing in the box office. He did and took some wonderful shots featured in issue #180. He would later do a photo shoot of me recording at Crystal Clear Sound Recording Studio. Some of both sessions were used on my CD covers.
He does great portraits, but that's not all. I have seen his exciting black and white landscapes! West Texas never looked so dramatic. I think he is at the world class level and one of the country's very best photographers.
Chapter Six: The ARTISTS.
Q. Great art is not what you put on a refrigerator... or make from one!
Q. Modern art – dada without the charm.
Q. His art spoke to me – but it didn’t have anything nice to say!
Q. Most modern art substitutes weird for quality, narrow isms for scope, and trendy for depth.
Q. Last century the goal was to fit the ism. This century the goal is to paint well – no ism. Fractionalized art then, synchronized art now. Even calling something modern art is a type of ism that separates that art from the art of the past.
Q. Has modern art painted itself into a corner?
Q. Online artists are the new wave of art. We've had all the isms of last century. Now we have a free for all, of all kinds of artists, not sanctioned by any museum or gallery, displaying their work. Out of that comes the next wave, and a revolution in art.
Most of the artists connected with Musea were cartoonists. So let's start there.
Todd Nauck. I met him at the Inwood Theater. He was a quiet studious guy who kept to himself. During down times in his box office shifts he would draw and draw and draw. I thought his work showed not only talent but the skill that comes from talent mixed with lots of hard work. Later I found he had done freelance work for Marvel! I asked him to do something, anything he wanted, for the first issue of Musea. He did a super hero rising through the sky with a fist in the air to guide him - a good start for Musea #1.
Blair Wilson. Wilson, from Seattle was the zine illustrator across the country. His work appeared in probably more zines than any other. He was known for some odd distorted amorphous, heavily detailed, people. His work popped up in every other zine out there either as stand alone comics, or as illustrations for others works. For example he illustrated works by Musea featured writers, Robert W. Howington, and Sparrow.
The Beats. See the Makovsky Sisters in zines.
Jessie Reclaw. This cartoonist from San Francisco is known for his strip, Slow Wave, where he illustrates people's offbeat dreams where anything goes.
Yul Tolbert. This Detroit cartoonist loves science and space and it shows. Among his zines are Timeliketoons, Whino the Whiny Cat, Are We On Mars Yet, and Zine Solar System. He has often contributed illustrations to Musea including the back cover of my book, The Best of Musea, the First 50 Issues. For many years he worked at McDonald's, a job he hated and complained about a lot! His style seems effortless and breezy. My own opinion is that Tolbert has not had the recognition that he deserves. He is also known for the packets of zines and art he sends out to people. If you see one, note the envelopes they come in. They are more of his art folded into a mailing envelope.
Carrie McNinch. Carrie loves food. Her zine comics are often about travel and what she ate when she got there. They include, The Assassin and The Whiner, Food Geek, and You Don't Get There From Here. First rate cartoonist and storyteller from Los Angeles.
Ace Backwards. Ace is from San Francisco. His comic strip, Twisted Image, was featured in many zines and collected into book form in the early 90's. I wrote and asked if I could reprint some of them. He suggested I get his book and copy from there. I did. I introduced his strip to my readers in issue #10 and from then on, for many years, his comics would end each issue of Musea. How to describe his work? It's like a punk 20 something with a light humor, and keen insight into both the human condition and the crazy world all around him. He now is a street person living on Telegraph Hill with his feral cats. Yet he somehow maintains a fascinating blog, Acid Heroes: the Legends of LSD, and a major Facebook following, including me!
Diane DiMassa. DiMassa, from Connecticut, did a sort of exaggerated perzine comic called, Hothead Paisan: Homicidal Lesbian Terrorist . Here is the story of an even tempered feminist living with her pet cat, Chicken, that has one flaw, a homicidal temper! Wait for it... Wait for it... With a title like that, I had to buy her comic book collection!
Julie Doucet. This Montreal Cartoonist is probably best known for her comic Dirty Plotte. She reminds me of Robert Crumb with the same underground drawing style that is so rich in details in every panel. I wrote her a letter telling her how much I liked her work and she graciously wrote back! That letter is a treasure.
Terry Bouchillon. I met Bouchillon at the Buchanan's monthly flea market, where he had a booth selling, among odds and ends, copies and originals of his artwork. He does childlike paintings and drawings that would look right at home in the best 50's children's books. He has taken many of his drawings and made copies in different sizes. I'm glad to own a few. This is gifted and charming work that needs to be a lot more celebrated. (Oklahoma.)
Brad W. Foster. Brad is a one man art industry that I've been glad to feature more than once in Musea. Under the name of Jabberwocky Press he has drawn, painted, and released, countless art works, comic books, pin ups, and much much more - too much to list even on his website. His motto is, Leave no piece of paper blank. (Irving, Tx.)
Valley House Gallery. This art gallery started 50 years ago as a rural six acre plot of land north of town. Now the town surrounds it and has grown way beyond it. But the art gallery and sculpture garden remain, an oasis in the middle of a busy city.
It was the first art gallery in Dallas, started by a talented painter Donald S. Vogel and wife Peggy. Now it is run by his son Kevin and his wife Cheryl. Though small it has featured some very big work. I saw a wonderful Matisse there that I still can see in my mind as I write this.
Donald Vogel also wrote and illustrated a number of fascinating books on painting and art. All of them are well done works of art in themselves.
Jeroen ter Welle. For years I had a Netherlands pen pal. We would trade art works. I'm not sure how he heard of me, but for many years we exchanged art. He did some fine line drawings that were both abstract and somewhat people shaped.
My Eastern European Reader. Someone from Eastern Europe heard of Musea, and sent a small box full of beautiful greeting cards covering all the seasons. The note with it asked if this was good enough for a copy of Musea. For sure it was! And I sent him many months worth of issues in trade.
My Work. Many issues of Musea also featured my own art, as illustrations for articles or just as art by itself. In a special issue #149 I did, An Art Exhibit in Book Form of about 30 of my better drawings. I made it in the shape of a CD cover, with a single art work per page.
Besides these hundreds of drawings (portraits, landscapes, still lifes, abstracts, etc.,) I featured my work in a few special Musea issues; including two on my ideas for architecture, two on my ideas for fashion, and one on my ideas for sculpture.
Q. I am drawn to art!
Q. Most modern art museums, like most modern art, are cold, charmless, severe, bloated, sedate, hard, antiseptic and stern.
Q. No one can accuse modern art of being charming.
Net Art School? Many of my present art friends are online. Perhaps something is going on there. I think that the next ism won't be another genre of art, but instead it will be the first group of artists on the internet. And online there really is no ism, it's any style goes. That is part of the fun of this new art.
Note too that there are no middlemen when you post and sell your art online. No need for galleries. I think that may be the new direction in art, a post-ism art that challenges what Modern Art has become. See later.
Here, let's list some notable artists I've met online.
Eli Plater Shaw. This Brit living in Spain does very colorful paintings that look like stained glass.
Jimmy Gordon. Paints surrealist works as if you were in a dream circus.
C. F. Roberts. Paints scary works - but very refined chills. Reminds me of Basquiat.
Kayleen Ylitalo- Horsma. Paints portraits
Serge Marshennikov. I first saw a nude painting by this Russian super realist at an antiques show. Most of his work shows young women, clothed or nude. He was born in 1971 and is already doing celebrated work - and the prices show it. He seems to paint as technically accurate as an old master, but with the charm of a Renoir.
Charles Thomson. I list this British artist for his role in starting the Stuckism Art Movement that has spread across many countries. Stuckism may be best known for their protests and demonstrations against the Turner Prize, a British prize for new art work. Too often the Turner Prize is a big check for trendy small achievements. See my Last Minute of Modern Art, article that uses a Turner Prize winning work to end modern art!
Gregory K. H. Bryant. Bryant is the most gifted and talented artist I know. Somehow through Musea I began to correspond with him. I knew him first as a philosopher and essayist. I started a column of his essays that ran for many years. (See columnists.) It was really only when I went online decades later, that I knew how gifted an artist he was. What a shock - what a nice shock!
This is an artist who excels at drawing, use of color, has a wide range of subject matter, and has mastered every genre. He can change from detailed pen and ink illustrations, to a broad color field abstraction, and just about anything in between. I am continually amazed at his work and I put him in the pantheon of the best of all time. He deserves it.
500 X, And My Million Dollar Collage. 500 X is a Deep Ellum Co-op gallery where a few artists live upstairs and display downstairs. From the outside it looks like one industrial brown brick, box of a building that is next to a railroad track with grass growing through the rails. Go inside and it opens up to a wonderful, quaint, two story, show place for art.
Each year for years the co-op of artists that lived, worked, and displayed there, sponsored a show open to all artists. I knew that Janet Kutner, the art reviewer from our daily newspaper, would cover it. I also knew that like almost all mainstream art reviewers, she would give her usual bizarre review where she lists the most outrageously goofy art with never a whaaaaa????, never a discouraging word. You need examples? Know that I am not making these up.
Jeff Nelson sets a tropical island afloat on a pyramid of wine racks... Mary Parker creates sculptural reliefs from a toilet handle and other plumbing parts... And my favorite by Bettina Jablonski, Visitors stand on an empty platform facing a blank wall, which activates a Spanish-language recording of "Hotel California."
I wanted to have some fun and bring a challenge to all this, so I entered a collage
titled Janet Kutner Writes Daffy Reviews. Then I priced it for one million dollars!
No one said a word ever, not when I entered it, not during the show, not in her review, and not when I picked it up!
Cy Twombly Photo? My second favorite photo / caption featured in Musea was a small photo in issue #96. To get the joke you must be familiar with the work of the celebrated abstract artist, Cy Twombly. The Musea photo shows a man with a huge grin on his face and a piece of chalk in his hand. Behind him is a blackboard with row after row of separate up and down lines. The caption reads, Cy Twombly Develops his Painting Style.
Musea Envelopes. The Inwood Theater had a section for free magazines. One of those magazines went out of business after a few issues, and abandoned their blue painted, two shelf, iron stand. I saw it, recycled it, and used it to carry my Museas from then on. For decades it set at the Inwood Theater with the latest Musea issue on it.
The stand had two shelves. Usually I would put the latest issue on the top shelf, and any back issues on the bottom. Sometimes I would do something different and fill a box with free copies of my drawings and offer them to anyone interested.
But around Xmas I had other plans for the little box on the bottom shelf. I put on the outside a sign that read Free Envelopes. Then I would fill it up with 50-100 handmade envelopes.
I would take some favorite glossy photos from magazines, fold them into an envelop shape, paste them up, and put them in the box. The best ones were three pieces of somewhat related art in one; with art on the cover, art on the flip side, and art inside the flap of the envelope.
I've made thousands of these and given away hundreds. They really caught on. Every year I would end up with a box empty except for a few of the tiniest ones left. I hope you got one during those years.
Modern Art. #135. This issue of Musea featured; The Last Minute of Modern Art, What Comes Next, My World of Art, Tommy's Renoir ( yes, I own a Renoir - a restrike print), and other articles on my ideas for a revolution in art.
Postism. Before I end this section I wanted to write about Post-ism. That is the name for the art that I suggest will replace modern art (which stopped being modern about 100 years ago!)
Postism, is a set of art ideas for a new century, not a continuation of last century trends. Here are some main points.
1 Mass Market Paintings like Prints. When any art form is mass marketed it enters a golden age. This has happened with books, records, and film. Let's add paintings. Most art is in museum basements. Mass Marketing allows art to tour in copies and allows artists to make royalties on copies. We treasure b/w prints. Let's add color.
2. End a Century of Isms. Dump the genres and formulas and let all kinds of art be a part of the art world.
3. Shift Emphasis From Trendy to Quality. Shift emphasis from the latest trendy art, to quality art in any style. Just because art is weird does not mean it is great art.
4. Free the Art From Museums and Galleries. Get the art out of the ivory elitist museum and gallery towers, and back into the world. Make art that is relevant and communicates with people. Start with the first generation of artists online.
5. Postism is Part of a Bigger Revolution. Postism is part of the bigger art and media revolution out of Dallas, that includes art, music, lit, film, media, and a lot more.
6. Postism Online: Online artists are the new wave of art. We had all the isms of last century. Now we have a free for all, of all kinds of artists, that are not sanctioned by any museum or gallery, displaying their work. Out of that will come both the next wave of artists and an art revolution.
Snake Oil Video. Online. This is my conceptual art / youtube video that uses conceptual art to challenge conceptual art!
Chapter Seven: FILM PEOPLE AND THE INWOOD.
This film people section starts at the Inwood Theater, Dallas. It is owned by the Landmark Theater Chain, the largest indie and foreign film theater chain in the country. It now owns about 52 theaters. I once suggested to management that they do a card deck with each card showing one of the theaters.
The Inwood opened on May 16, 1947. Then it was a stand alone building with a main theater and a large balcony. Decades ago the balcony was turned into two viewing rooms. In the lobby, across the glass brick wall, that my one time neighbor Bob helped build, is the celebrated Inwood Lounge.
I began working there in 1990 because I needed a temporary job. It lasted 24 years till they forced me out in 2014.
3 Owners. Talk about people! Let's start at the top. When I was hired, the Inwood was a part of a chain of art house theaters run by three guys from California: Steve Gilula, Gary Megan, and Burt Manzon. Little did I know that the first owners were also the best and most innovative.
Poor Inwood and Landmark Theaters, you kept changing hands through the years and going down hill from there. Or should I say poor Inwoo because that neon sign rising above the theater always has a letter or two out, and there are so few repair shops left for ancient neon!
When I began working there in 1990, the Inwood was the only independent and foreign film theater in the entire metroplex and it was hopping. When we would get a hit, it would be packed show after show.
Angela Davis. Angela hired me. She was a cute, petite, yuppie, manager that I liked very much. Years later I confided in another person that had worked there, that I had a crush on Angela. He replied, We all did.
I remember during my first week a film had broken downstairs, and Angela was running up the long winding staircase to fix a second emergency upstairs. A customer was racing behind her yelling at the top of his lungs, I want my money back! Angela responded in a normal voice, OK. Then he responded as if he hadn't heard it with his reasons why he should get his money back. She responded with, OK. It took him about four rounds before it sunk in. He kept looking for a battle that just wasn't there!
Perry Nichols. The Inwood wall murals were painted by Perry Nichols, one of the Dallas Nine, a group of regional painters of note from the Dallas area. If you go to visit, know that the huge round painting along the stairs, once covered that entire wall. Restorers from France were hired to fix the murals that had deteriorated. They saw that most of the stair painting was not salvageable, so they reduced it to it's highlights, a huge framed painting in a circle. Also know that those glass stairs beside the mural have lights in them!
Here is a secret from an insider. There is a fine hidden mural in the back of the big theater painted around a huge circular mirror. It needs attention though. Its cracks should be patched up, and it should be lit so people can see it.
The theater originally had a fish or aquarium theme. I remember the first thing I learned to do as an usher, was to clean the ashtrays - people could smoke inside the theater then. We would remove the ash and butts with a sieve, flatten out the sand, and then use a plastic mould to push into the sand the imprint of a fish!
Also note that on entering The Inwood, you pass the ticket booth, a glassed in bump out where tickets are sold. This was the home of my Box Office Concerts. More on that later.
Training Staff. Part of my job in the box office was to train new people. I would remind them that at least one in every 100 of our customers was certifiably insane, so don't let them upset you. Because they had already worked at the concession stand, they all had the same response, "ONE!?!"
Here are some true customer stories.
A woman comes up to me in the box. Behind her is a man in line. The woman asks me what the midnight film will be this weekend. I tell her. Then she asks, When will it start? I try to keep a straight face and be polite and say, Midnight, but it is pretty hard to do when the guy behind her has fallen on the ground laughing!
A man comes up and asks if there is a Starbucks near by. Box says, Yes, go two doors down and you'll see it across the drive. Then he asks, Is there one closer?
A young guy comes up to me and asks, What is the loo-gee? I said, What? He said, What is the loo-gee?" and he points to the neon over the bar. "Oh you mean The LOUNGE.
Celebrities? We had some fun celebrities that visited the theater.
David Byrne. I have two David Byrne stories. Here is the first. He came by to the Inwood when I was not there, and an usher said that there was a guy that worked at the theater (meaning me), that was a musician too, and that looked like him. Could he get Byrne's autograph for that guy? Byrne gave it to the usher, who later gave it to me!
Morgan Fairchild. The theater was in between shows, and Morgan Fairchild, and a beautiful brunette friend came up for tickets. Fairchild is my age, but she looks half of that. Her friend was beautiful too, and both were charming to me. I don't remember what we talked about, or what the occasion was, but there were no others in line so we could chat a bit. That was fun, and I remember that she was both beautiful and charming.
Robert Redford. I also saw the back of Robert Redford as he was going in to the lounge, though I didn't know that it was him at the time. I later learned that he was scouting out the Inwood, and thinking of buying the entire Landmark Theater Chain. Wish he had!
Detour, for more Celebrities. Speaking of celebrities, a little gossip is in order. It is always fun to read about the doings of stars when they are in public and not in front of a camera - when they are just being themselves. I probably met more of them when I worked at the Doubleday Bookstore in NorthPark than at the Inwood. NorthPark is perhaps the oldest, best, and most upscale of this cities malls.
So anyway, just for fun, here is some quick name dropping from my own experiences there.
Marilyn McCoo (Singer / 5th Dimension.) Most charming of those I met, and very beautiful.
Joseph Heller, (writer) Nora Ephron (writer, director). Tie for celebrities that were worried about what I, a complete stranger, and a book clerk, thought!
Vidal Sasson, (haircuts). Most distant.
Eve Arden, (actress. I recognized her, she recognized that I recognized her, but I did not think she wanted to be bothered. So I didn't say anything.
Mickey Rooney. Best line. I was coming back from the bank in the outer part of the mall and walking in front of me is Micky Rooney, and a tall woman. Both were eating ice cream cones and walking across the parking lot. I, completely taken by surprise, blurted out, Mr. Rooney! He replied, "Hiya kid, Hiya!" and kept walking.
Celebrity break over. Back to the theater. The Inwood had people who were famous to all the staff; not for being celebrities, but for their offbeat behavior! Here are three.
Sweater Vest. This young guy always wore a sweater vest. He loved our theater and would come often. But we thought it was strange when he would come to the same film over and over; two, three, four, or more times. Something was up, and when we got women complaining that someone groped them in the dark, we figured it out.
First he was banned to sitting alone. That didn't work because Sweater Vest would sit alone, the lights would come down, then he would move and sit by his victim! After we found that out he was officially banned from the theater for good.
Crazy Nurse. I got along with this middle aged woman, who someone claimed was once a nurse, when she came to the theater. But on every visit, she would find something wrong with the rest of the staff. In some way on every visit, she found someone that had mistreated and disrespected her. We all knew her by site, and would be as cautious and polite as possible, but no matter, somebody was always against her.
Popcorn Lady. She was the perfect customer. Once every night, almost exactly at 10 till 9, she would park her sports car outside, wave to me in the box office, walk inside and get a bag of popcorn. Because it was between shows, she never had to wait, and the concession stand had nothing else to do. She was nice, friendly, very thin but with a huge voice, and personable. She was the nice Highland Park kind of people (Dallas knows what I mean here.) And customers, you reading this, need to know a movie secret. Popcorn is the single product with the biggest markup. It costs us practically nothing to buy and make, but it costs you the customer plenty!
Some days Popcorn Lady would come in and see that the popcorn had sat there awhile, and she would ask for fresh. On slow nights, the staff didn't make a lot ahead, and stopped cooking early in the night. It takes two or three minutes to make a new batch and it is not a big deal at all. And for the customer, it really makes a big difference in taste. Fresh is hot, takes butter and salt better, and just tastes better all around. The staff was glad to do it for her. Then one day, stupid management decreed that we were not to make a special batch of popcorn for the Popcorn Lady. I thought it was the dumbest move ever. I would have thought that the better way to go would have been to give her free popcorn from then on, and have her tell her friends. What fun and good will that would have been! Instead certain stupid management people alienated her. Luckily most of the staff simply ignored the management rules and made fresh.
Detour for Brandy. That reminded me of another somewhat similar situation. This happened when I worked as a waiter. We got a new employee at the bar of Great Gattis, a pizza/Italian place I worked at, in the Plaza of the Americas, a downtown Dallas mall. Brandy was young, beautiful, curvy, sexy, and fun. Her shift started with the busy lunch crowd, and then continued through the slow afternoon hours up till our busy happy hour. Afternoons at Gattis usually brought in one or two customers at most; not much business until around 5.
But the men customers met Brandy and that all changed. Each day more and more men stopped in during the afternoon break for a drink. She would kid and tease them, and they loved her. Each day more and more found out about this popular bartender and made it a point to come down to the bar to be around her.
Then one day management was angry at Brandy. She refused to follow some stupid rule. Management had to pull rank to save face. Brandy had spirit too and fought back. Words were exchanged and things got out of hand. Finally she wrote an I quit note, and left in a huff.
Then I watched the bar crowd over the following weeks. When they saw Brandy was gone, they were gone too. The afternoon crowd dwindled back down to two or 3. I thought to myself, management, you are idiots!
Moral? How does being so rigid to the Popcorn Lady, or to Brandy help business? It doesn't.
Big Hits. Because we were the only foreign and indie film theater for so long, we got some monster hits. And the popular demand kept them at our theater for months. We often got viewers from all the small towns north, south, east, and west of Dallas too. Sometimes some one would motor in from faaaaaaaar West Texas - Texas is one BIG state - and they would come on a night when for some reason, the film they drove all that way for, wasn't showing! Ouch that was tough telling them that. The best the staff could do to make up for it, was to offer free tickets for another show, or another day. I really felt bad for those travelers. Virtually all of them took the bad news well though, thank heavens.
The first week I worked at the theater we had, The Cook, The Thief, His Wife, and Her Lover directed by Peter Greenaway. That is a long title for the marquee.
We had to change the marquee almost weekly on a wobbly two story ladder! That is one reason I stopped working on Thursday! The Inwood still uses cast iron letters that weigh a ton each, and beware if someone drops one from the two story ladder. They're not only dangerous to anyone underneath but they make a massive loud bang when they hit the ground.
Back to the film. It was my first weekend, a Friday evening, and it was a sell out. The key scene of the Greenaway film is at the very end. Spoiler alert! That is when a really mean awful mobster gets his due. He is killed, chopped, and served up, for dinner!
OK the entire film is leading up to this big scene. It is the pay off for sitting through a pretty rough, explicit, and abusive movie. Well the big theater is packed with people watching it, and the lobby is packed with people waiting to go in and see it - two sold outs. Then right before the final finale feast, the film breaks! The audience becomes restless. They think there is a guy in the projection booth watching the film for such problems and working to fix it. There isn't and hasn't been since about 1960!
When enough time goes by someone complains and the manager rushes to see what's happened. Then what to do. Fix the film? Offer refunds? Tell the 300 watching it why the film broke? Tell the 300 waiting why they are still waiting?
Somehow, we told the audience that the film broke, offered refunds, fixed the film, got the old audience out and the new one in, and got through the night; but all the time I am thinking to myself, what have I gotten myself into!
Big films. We had other super popular foreign films such as The Crying Game (with a big secret revealed), Life Is Beautiful, and Cinema Paradiso.
Cinema Paradiso. Cinema Paradiso lasted for a year. It tells the story of a young boy growing up in a small, one theater Italian town that loves film.
As an usher my job was to prop open the doors during the ending, wait till people left, and pick up the trash.
This film had my favorite ending ever. I watched it hundreds of times. In the film, the projectionist of the theater has to edit out the racy love scenes of the films by decree of the local Church. The ending of the film is a scene where that reel of all those stored bits of film is played as a single short film. It is a montage of passionate Hollywood kissing scenes set to a beautiful theme song. It is extremely touching and bittersweet. I never got tired of watching it.
Blair Witch. Our most popular indie film and the most popular film of all the decades that I worked there was the Blair Witch Project. Nothing else came close. Before it started its run, we had two video monitors in the lobby that continually played short previews. These previews were genuinely scary with a documentary feel to them. The film looked great!
The public agreed. We began to sell out the upcoming show, then the next show after, then the rest of the shows that day. And when those were filled, we had to start selling upcoming days!
Want Wednesday day? Friday is sold out. Got Sunday late open! The crowds did not stop! Selling was madcap, lines were long, time flew by, and it was crazy fun.
Later, when the crowds dropped down to normal, I got to see the film for myself. When I came out I was thinking of what Bart Simpson said after Lisa read him The Raven. You know what would have been scarier than that poem? Anything! Blair Witch seemed amazingly full of nothing to me.
Gassed. One night a customer came out to the box office and told me that she wanted her money back. The theater smelled like gas. I gave her a refund and told the manager on duty, David Kimball. (See box office concerts.) He went in and smelled it too. Then he called the gas company and they told him to shut down the film, and empty the theater. They were on their way.
He turned on the theater top lights, got the few people there out - it was a slow week night - and while I refunded their tickets, he began to open the three exit doors to air out the auditorium.
When he opened the one by the dumpster in the alley, he saw a pickup truck idling, a couple making out in the cab, and the exhaust from their truck pouring through the crack under the theater door! They had parked in the empty alley and thought they had found a great spot! They were also gassing our customers!
Coworkers, Customers, and More. I made lots of friends from all the people around the Inwood. There were the many, many, many, coworkers on the staff, a staff that turned over every 6 months. There were the many regular customers that I recognized and liked. There were people passing by like Candy who would ride her bike from work and stop and say hello. And there were a big turn over of bored strip mall security guards patrolling the shops, that would wave or stop and talk, as they passed by on their rounds.
Paul Adair. Of all the film people I've met, no one knew more about films, and theaters in Dallas and Texas than Paul Adair. After working in projection for most of his life, he started up the Major Theater on Samuel Boulevard. Along the way he collected a massive amount of memorabilia and knowledge about films.
When the Inwood, or the Inwoo as Paul calls it, was celebrating our 50th anniversary in 1997, the management turned to him for old photos of the theater to display in the lobby. The pix added a lot to the celebration, but sadly I don't think he got them all back!
He has always been supportive of Musea, and is a staunch advocate for putting old films into the public domain, something the conglomerates, and the late Sonny Bono, have always fought against.
Box Office Concerts. My job at the theater was OK. It was busy before the shows started, then a long break, then we would let those first shows out and repeat the process, two or three times a shift. The in between slow times were boring, and there was nothing to do. Then I got an idea.
I asked my then manager, David Kimball, if I could bring up my standard guitar and play in the box during the in between periods. The Inwood was known for being a fun place to go to, and an innovative place to work. David thought it was a great idea. Box Office Concerts were born.
I was scheduled the same two nights each week, Tuesday and Wednesday. I'd play from about 5:30-6:00 before the first rush started for the 7-8PM shows, and then play another half hour from about 8:00-8:30 before the last shows started.
Things evolved. First I just played my standard guitar. Pet Dog Guitar is a 60's standard Silvertone bought at Sears for about $50. Then I brought an amp. I had a small practice amp, about the size of a shoe box, that fit the ticket window perfectly - pure luck. I would hook up my mike to that, put it on the mike stand, strap on my guitar, stand up, stand back, and play and sing into the single mike.
People liked it. I got lots of fun press for both me and the theater; and the pictures, a man playing guitar in a glassed in box office, looked offbeat and original. (See photographers.) Even the three original owners of the entire theater chain praised my Box Office Concerts when they visited from California.
My favorite audiences were kids. For many of those years there was an ice cream shop or a frozen yogurt place next door, and many families would be walking by with their desserts. The young kids would hear the music and always react the same. They would see me playing, freeze with their mouths open and their eyes wide, check with their parents to see if I was dangerous, and then begin to dance to the beat! I often had two, three, or more kids running around and swinging to the music while their parents watched, or clapped.
There was one mom who often walked her daughter Phoebe in a baby carriage in the evenings. Phoebe seemed to love to hear me play. And because I did it for 15+ years, Phoebe actually grew up during that time. I saw her mother recently when I was at jury duty. She said Phoebe is now taller than her and in high school.
My favorite adult response was one I got many times and it was always the exact same wording. They would hear me first, then discover me playing, and say:
I thought you were a radio!
The Box Office Concerts, started around 1996 and lasted till about 2014. Then the new management began to push me out. They ended my shifts on weeknights - so no box office concerts, and kept me on a Sunday day shift for a while. Then they stopped scheduling me all together.
When they cancelled my Box Office concerts, I complained to the regional manager who had once complimented me when she had heard me play. She said I could play The Lounge. I did for a few weeks. I loved playing there too when they would let me. But that didn't last either. They cancelled that. I saw the writing on the wall and about a month later, after they stopped scheduling me for any shifts, I began to think they were telling me something!
I think they pushed me out and forced me to quit after 24 years, and I'm still not happy about it. I hold everyone responsible from owner Mark Cuban, on down. (See the advocacy section.)
And more than just my unhappy fate, is the fate of the theater itself. The Inwood when I started working there, was the most exciting theater in a metroplex of 3 million. Now it has gone from a major part of the town's best culture, to a giant kiddie theater with no back support in their pillow couches, and Hollywood fodder on the big screen. And the two upstairs smaller screen theaters that show some adult films, are so cramped - owners wanted to squeeze in extra seats with less leg room to make more bucks - that few adults like sitting there either. Being 6'4" I can't.
Customers deserve better, the Inwood deserves better, and I deserve better.
Speaking of films, Musea did many issues on films. Besides our best of the year lists - and a big thank you to all those who contributed - Musea did many articles on film. Here are some notable ones.
Short Story Films. #6.
Guerilla Theater Chain. #71.
How to Make a Film for Five Dollars. #75.
Saving Private Theaters or If Musea Ran A Chain. #96.
I also decided to do a big film guide listing the best films from 1887 to 2000. I took each year and compiled what I thought were the best films of that year. The Musea Movie Guide covered three issues; #86, #87, and #88. Talk about people! Those guides cover a hundred years of directors and stars - more stars than there are in the heavens.
I also have written many movie film scripts that are in different stages of preparation. They range from just a basic story line to a first draft of a finished script. Issue #119 had 70 of these film ideas. Issue #141 covered one of the more complete film scripts titled Mondo Tom, or Home Movies, a sampler of all my work.
Videos. There is a sort of pecking order in performance arts. At the top is the legitimate Stage. They look down on film, who looks down on TV, who now looks down on video!
But I don't, and I have about 60 youtube videos on all aspects of the arts: music videos, poem videos, art videos, and a six video lecture series - as if I would lecture - on the Five Doors of the Art Revolution. See issue #165 for my guide to what is in the first 60 videos.
Plus, I recently received a music gift out of the blue. CD Baby, the people who are distributing my online music to the other outlets, have posted 150 videos of my music on Youtube, one for each song I've released. Each video shows the album cover and plays the song.
Chapter Eight: SPECIAL DALLAS PEOPLE AND PLACES.
This town is tough on artists. Don't listen to any art booster who denies it. The truth is simple to see. Anyone that has achieved any level of achievement in any art, has run screaming across the city limits to get to anywhere but here. Proof? Look at the list of notable people related to the arts, and see how many still work here!
Those few that were either too foolish not to leave, or too stubborn to move, make up the soul of this town. Here, in a very biased report, are a few, crazy, delightful, talents that stayed, at least for awhile.
My brother Bill sent me a postcard while he was visiting Europe. He wrote on the back, I wish you could see Amsterdam. It's your kind of place. Dallas is my home, but it is not quite my kind of place yet. I think it has the potential to be very great - one of the best cities in the country, and maybe the world. In my song, Dallas, I sing this line in the chorus, This town lies in the future.
My Top Ten Dallas People.
1. Van Cliburn. The Fort Worth classical pianist achieved worldwide attention in 1958 when he won the Tchaikovsky Piano Competition in Moscow. Then he started his own, The Van Cliburn International Piano Competition, held yearly. Classical act all the way.
2. Dallas Cowboys. America's Team, a football legacy.
3. Gordon McLendon. Started the Top 40 radio format at KVIL in the fifties.
4. Stanley Marcus. Perhaps he is the most notable of the Marcus family, owners of the Neiman Marcus Department Store. He stood for quality and great customer service. I met him a few times because he knew my boss Dale at the flower shop where I would deliver flowers. He was quiet, cultured, always impeccably dressed, and soft spoken.
Here is a fun story about Mr. Marcus. He needed to add cable to his TV set. The repairman took a look and said, he couldn't hook him up. Seems Mr Marcus had bought the best quality TV he could in the 1950's and it had lasted and lasted and lasted. But of course it never had any cable outlets!
5. Joe Bob Briggs, Drive in Movie Critic. I never met him, but I worked with his wife at Doubleday Bookstore at NorthPark. She was wonderful. Then I learned she was a twin, met her sister, and liked her as much or more!
Musea, in an article Why Dallas is Better Than Austin, listed Joe Bob Briggs as one reason why. He reciprocated in his Joe Bob Report with this.
... We knew we liked Tom for a reason. Or could it be because Musea takes an aggressive stance on excellence in art, openly opposing the handful of corporate conglomerates which currently control all art and art distribution. Not to mention his support of art as an expression of the soul and not the pocketbook.
6. Church of the Sub Genius, Reverend Stang. When I worked at KNON, our Sunday afternoon show was right before an Hour of Slack. I would pass the Reverend in the halls.
Detour. That brings to mind the night when I was hanging out at the station, and helping a guy, I forget his name, with his KNON Sunday night talk show. He took an on the air call from Frank Zappa!
I thought it was very exciting for a talent that big to call our little station. But this was not a social call for Zappa. He was fired up and speaking out against the idea that albums should be rated for content like films. This was the mid 80's. And he spoke at length about the importance of freedom of speech in lyrics.
7. Barney the Purple Dinosaur. I did not know Barney from the Barney and Friends TV show; but I did deliver flowers to the corporate headquarters in north Dallas once. The place was the usual buttoned-down office with one exception - a huge, billboard sized, purple Barney painted on the wall.
8. Big Tex. Since 1952 Big Tex, the 55 foot statue, has welcomed visitors to the annual Texas State Fair held at Fair Park in October. His clothes are a BIG deal with size 70 boots, a pair of XXXXXL jeans, and a 75 gallon hat.
9. H. L. Hunt. Texas Oil Billionaire, super conservative, and perhaps the model for the head of the Ewing Clan in the TV show Dallas; was, during his life, one of the richest men in the world.
Here is a story I heard from my girlfriend at the time. She worked for the fashion magazine WWD, Women's Wear Daily, and she was assigned to interview Mr. Hunt. She took along a photographer who took some photos of him to go along with the interview. Both the interview and a photograph ran in the magazine soon after.
Later Hunt's secretary called my girlfriend up, said that Mr. Hunt really like the photo the magazine used, and asked how she could get him a copy. My girlfriend said sure, she would be glad to mail Mr. Hunt a copy. Then as an aside she said, I think my photographer usually charges $10 for a photo. The secretary said, hold for a minute please. She came back on the phone and said. I'm sorry, Mr Hunt thinks that is too much, and hung up.
10. Pegasus. The flying horse has become the symbol of Dallas. The Magnolia Building, or the Magnolia Hotel, is one of the skyscraper gems in downtown. When it opened in the summer of 1922, it was the tallest building in the city. On the roof they put a neon pegasus sign that revolved.
Somewhere along the way the flying horse became the symbol for the town. And a good one it is. I see the town as a working horse that can also soar! The sign is still there though it is now dwarfed by other taller buildings around it.
Notables. Time to drop some names. Here is a listing of other notables from Dallas in no specific order: Ernie Banks, Annie Clark, Dimebag Darrell, Trini Lopez, Jayne Mansfield, Dr. Phil, Bebe Daniels, Michael Nesmith, Doc Holliday, Ray Wylie Hubbard, Norah Jones, Dennis Rodman, B. W. Stevenson, Sly Stone, Stephan Stills, Stevie Ray Vaughan, Todd Oldham, Steve Miller, Leeza Gibbons, Dixie Chicks, Brave Combo, Gene Street, Sharon Tate, Meat Loaf, Lisa Loeb, Charlie Pride, Demi Lovato, Mr. Peppermint, Jack Kilby, Freddie King, Usher, Edie Brickell, Selena Gomez Jamie Foxx, Peri Gilpin, Jerry Hall, LeAnn Rimes, Sam the Sham, Chuck Norris, Bugs Henderson, Vanilla Ice, Owen Wilson, Morgan Fairchild, Tex Avery, and Erykah Badu,
My Top Ten Dallas Places.
1. Fair Park. Fair Park is the largest concentration of art deco buildings in the country. It also hosts the Texas State Fair every October. That includes a display of the annual butter sculpture. Whoever does these sculptures in frosty butter, has a lot of talent! Fair Park is one of the best features of Dallas. It deserves more care, development, and use, as does the neighborhoods around it. Musea has written about what a gem the town has here, and how we can better utilize all of it more often while at the same time supporting the neighborhoods all around it.
2. Kimbell Art Museum. Fort Worth has a wonderful concentration of art museums including the Amon Carter, Fort Worth Modern, and my favorite, The Kimbell designed by Louis Kahn. Kay Kimbell left so much money to run his museum, that only the Getty has a bigger budget. This is a beautiful, well lit place!
3. Meadow's Museum. This jewel of a museum on the SMU campus specializes in Spanish art. The permanent collection is solid, and the exhibits are always interesting. The collection also includes my favorite painting, Sybil by Velasquez.
4. Old Red Courthouse. When Texas was settled, each town had a square and each square had a courthouse. The one built here in 1892 was built of red sandstone, and is now called Old Red. It's a big Victorian style structure, with a hodgepodge architecture that somehow works fine. Now it is a museum for the city.
5. Olla Padrida. Though long ago torn down for progress????, this long and tall craft mall looked like a red barn from the outside, and featured 80 - 90 craft shops, workshops, and cafes inside. People would walk through, or up and down the rustic winding two story paths, and see all kinds of surprises. I loved the place, and once asked management if I could roam the place with my standard guitar and play and sing for free. They ok'd it and I had one fun night serenading people!
6. NorthPark Mall. I worked at the mall at the small Doubleday Book Store for many years. The upscale mall is still there and seems to have almost doubled in size with now 235 stores. When people drive in from the towns around Dallas, many like to stop at NorthPark for shopping. While many malls are having troubles, NorthPark seems to be doing well.
7. Neiman Marcus. This famous department store known for finest products and best service is still here, though no longer owned by the Marcus family. NM, sometimes called Needless Markup by the locals, is also known for their Christmas Catalogues with the outrageous His and Her Gifts. They also used to have great shopping fortnights each year that celebrated the products and culture of a single country. These were exotic events for both Dallas and Texas.
I often delivered flowers to the downtown store. There I would go through the delivery door, get checked out, and then take the service elevators up to the right floor. I loved to deliver there, because all the shop girls were so pretty and well dressed. And unlike what you may think, this very high class place was never snooty to me. PS, the same can be said for The Mansion, our other claim to high end fame. They too treated this delivery person well. I speak from experience. Both places deserve recognition for that. When other upscale places can be so dismissive to help or service people, these two were not.
8. Tex Mex. From El Fenix that opened in 1918 to any of the hundreds of Tex Mex restaurants here now, you can't go wrong. What great food! PS, Dallas invented the Frozen Margarita - smooth move!
9. Tie: Denton, a college town north of the metroplex, or Deep Ellum, Dallas. Both have been known as great music centers.
UNT, University of North Texas at Denton is known for its jazz music and the celebrated One O'clock Lab Band. This jazz band also records in the same Dallas studio I do, Crystal Clear Sound. I have stood in the lobby and heard them through the walls. Big great lively sound.
Deep Ellum on the other hand was a somewhat poor neighborhood between Downtown and Fair Park, that was known in the 20's as a place for jazz and blues musicians such as Blind Lemon Jefferson, Robert Johnson, Lead Belly, and Bessie Smith. This part of town also has the legacy of being where Johnson recorded almost half of his 29 known recordings. He may have been selling out at the crossroads, but he was recording in Dallas.
In the 80's Deep Ellum had a resurgence and became more than body repair shops. It became a center for punk music with some bands taking local recognition, nationwide. Perhaps the best known was Edie Brickell & New Bohemians, with their national hit, What I am.
10. Half Priced Books. HPB has grown from one store to be the biggest chain of used book stores in the country - and BTW, they do carry this Musea. See main store.
Before we end this section here is a sampling of some of the articles in Musea about Dallas, city planning, and Dallas people.
Q. I wasn't born in Texas, but I lived here longer than many that were.
Q. Texas is an Indian word that means, 'Better than where YOU came from'.
Q. Some say Alaska is bigger than Texas. I say, you fill a glass with ice and there isn't much room for drink!
Q. Are the suburbs dying?
A. Do you call that living?
Art On the Largest Scale of All: City Planning (#36.) This issue talked about some of the problems facing cities and some new solutions.
It was the first time I mentioned the idea of turning downtown Dallas into the world's largest pedestrian mall. My thinking was this - cars should go to Downtown, or around downtown, but not through downtown.
Later I condensed the idea. Start with one street. Make Main Street a pedestrian walkway from downtown, through Deep Ellum, to Fair Park. Then extend it in the other direction, across the Trinity River and into Oak Cliff.
Special Dallas Issue (#53). This issue included two main articles. Musea's Guide to the Arts of Dallas with 100 Best People, Places, and Things in the Arts of Dallas, and The Musea Plan, our vision of what Dallas could be 30 years from now and the steps to make it happen.
The Musea Plan was this. When you look at a map of the city - and I provided one in the issue - you see that three of the city's major features make a triangle; Downtown, Fair Park, and Rochester Park. Rochester Park is the largest, inner city, undeveloped, forest in any big U.S. city. Both Rochester Park and Downtown are on the banks of the Trinity River. The Musea Plan suggested that this inner city area be a pedestrian zone, free of cars. This would make all the land within the triangle prime places to develop. It would tie the city and it's three best features together, and it would make this Triangle Town a one of a kind world attraction for everyone to visit and see. For added fun, I suggested this tourist attraction - keep a herd of Longhorns on the grassy flat bottom banks of the Trinity River!
Thanks for taking the time to write and send me a copy of Musea (#53). I appreciate your interest in the Dallas's Arts! There are still several places on your Musea's Art Guide that I have yet to visit. Ronald Kirk, Mayor of Dallas.
New City (#76). This was our vision of the new city, what it could look like and how the arts could be integrated into it. It talked about the car problem, low housing solutions, and CBA's. This was the first mention of CBA's or Community Bank Accounts. It is a way to end poverty without spending a penny. More details later.
Wrestling the Wangdoodle, by Bubba Dwayne (#28). Some accuse Texans of telling tall tales. Here is one that to out of staters sounds like an exaggeration, and to native Texans sounds like an understatement. The tale tells how Bubba wrestled the all-too-real Whangdoodle monster and survived to brag about it from his hospital bed... as he rightly should.
Chapter Nine: COLUMNISTS.
Q. An ocean of stories in a bottle of ink.
Q. Digest food before koans.
Q. Blank texts say the most.
When ever I discovered a zine writer, poet, or artist, that did great work, I would ask if I could reprint their work in Musea. As I got to know some of them, I went further and asked if I could use their work on a regular basis in a column for Musea. Almost all kindly agreed. Here are my Musea columns and the people involved.
Gregory K. H. Bryant. (See art.) I ran many fine essays from GKHB for many issues. He covered all kinds of subjects with real insight and creative thought. I later published two small chapbooks of his work. (See index.)
AfterImage Gallery. Ben Bread kindly allowed me to reprint photos from his latest photography exhibit. That allowed me to print some of the very best photos in Musea. (See photographers.)
Ace Backwards. Loompanics Unlimited had released a great collection of Ace's cartoons. I asked if I could reprint some. He said yes. (See cartoonists.)
Robert W. Howington and Weasel Boy. I featured work from both on a regular basis, and would often reprint a piece from Howington in one issue of Musea, and Weasel Boy in the next. (See zines.)
Sparrow. I loved the slightly askew and offbeat poems of Sparrow. I first saw many of them printed in other zines. I asked him if I could reprint some in my zine, and he said yes. He would often mail me a packet of cut up poem pieces to give me choices on what to run. His poems are hard to describe so here are three of his very very short ones.
Flamingos alternate legs.
The cheapest anchors float.
Incense climbs stairs.
From the Letters of Mark Harris. Harris was the editor of Rediscoveries Newsletter. He was also a zinester from Chicago that would often reply to the latest Musea with wonderful comments. I asked to reprint some of these, and he agreed. Sample:
I could fill pages and pages with comments about the ideas you've been putting forth in Musea and the Handbook (Art Revolutionary Handbook - see index.) Just about every line makes me think...
Zebulon Nebula. His column, Nebulous Notions consisted of essays that he wrote for Musea. He had an encyclopedic knowledge and used it to illustrate his points of view. I was fascinated by his well reasoned essays, but I found him difficult to work with. After a while I stopped printing his work, and we lost contact. (New Jersey.)
Selections. This column by Tim Wood, would talk about the local Dallas art scene. (See Art Revolutionary Festivals.)
100 Years Ago in Musea. Antique Photos with Stories. I took my favorite flea market photos and began to make up a past for them, as if the people in the pictures were somehow connected to Musea. Would love to some day, publish a book of these. (See Photographers.)
Metroplex Chart Toppers. This was a monthly chart of the best sellers in Dallas local music, and one of my biggest mistakes. Many of the outlets for Musea were indie music stores that carried local music. I thought I'd support local musicians and give them a boost with their own Top Ten. I would consult the store owners and get the local music news each month when I delivered my latest issue.
Here was the fine print from the column. Rating is determined by sales, radio airplay, and consultation with our music sources (in that order.)
Rant alert! Those lists were hard to do. They took a massive amount of my time. And if there was a single musician on the list that ever thanked me, I never knew about it. Response to the Chart Toppers? Nothing, never, except that one drunk who left me a phone message that said he was upset for some band slipping a couple of places in the charts. Support is a two way street. I had had enough. I stopped doing the charts, - no one ever mentioned that either - and I have never regretted that decision.
The rest of the columns were in house stuff, that included.
Zinerama. News and reviews of zinesters and their zines.
In the Chinese Manner. Poems influenced by the great classic Asian poets.
Koan Comics, The Third Door. This was a 3 part cartoon strip of mine. Very simple. The first panel showed a closed door. The second showed the same door and a speech balloon that said Ding Dong! The third door showed the door open and something unusual or surreal on the other side. (See index.)
Saying of Editor Art. Sprinkled throughout Musea were my quips, quotes, and sayings. I also did one book of collected sayings. (See index.)
Art Surfin'. (Began as Random Access.) This was surely one of the most popular parts of Musea. It usually covered the last page of Musea, along side a Twisted Image cartoon. It was a collection of short news items, gossip, or rants, on all aspects of the arts. I got into the habit of starting each Art Surfin, with an introductory mangled quote such as:
Double Double toil and trouble,
Fire Burns, Art Surfin' Bubbles,
Hard News. This spinoff from Art Surfin' was made up of short bits on the recent news in the world of arts and media.
Musea E-mail Club. When I started my Wordpress blog online, I began to send out weekly e-mails to my readers on any aspect of the current arts that I thought they might be interested in. I sometimes collected the best, or most pertinent of these, and made an entire Musea issue of them titled, Best of the Musea E-mail Club. As of now I've posted well over 750 of these. (See index.)
Musea Quiz. My art quizzes with prizes, was the most popular feature of Musea. I would try to offer a new art contest each month in print, and later each week online.
I had hundreds of smart winners. One rule was that a winner could only win the prize one time. But I encouraged past winners to keep playing and sending in their answers for the fun of it, and many did and still do.
The quizzes cover everything connected to the arts. They are very tough and sometimes the answers are both tricky and sneaky.
I shifted them from the issues of Musea to online, where more people play now. I like to tease the readers when there are no eligible winners with some snarky quip to keep them challenged such as Your thinking cap was askew on this one.
My nephew Erik Peterson, son of my sister Jean, gathered a chapbook full of his favorite questions and answers and published it. Good looking book, well done!
Finally a word to remember my other sister Peggy. She was the biggest winner of the contest, and by far the biggest supporter of Musea. I miss her and dedicate these puzzles to her.
Caption on the Quiz Issue Cover #131 showing a massive wall of computers:
All Q. and A. on authority of the Puzzle Meister 1000.
Cassette Correspondence. Before I leave this section I wanted to mention the audio letters I exchanged with a talented writer, zinester, and artist, Alden Scott Crow (Sacramento.) He has been a supporter of Musea for many years.
Somewhere along the way we began to exchange cassettes instead of letters. We would each record our responses to the last cassette received, tell the latest news, and talk about the arts overall. I've always thought that a lot of what we said in those saved cassettes is worth publishing one day. Might make a fun recording, video series, short film, or book.
Chapter Ten: ART REVOLUTION FESTIVALS.
Q. The biggest weakness in the Dallas art community is that people stay in their own artistic ghetto. - Tim Wood.
The first issue of Musea, a legal sized page of paper printed front and back, spelled out the state of the arts, and they were not good. They were in the doldrums. Musea's byline read,
Art News and Reviews for Those Who Oppose the Status Quos.
We accept absolutely, positively, no advertising. We will not ask for or accept government grants. We will not accept corporate sponsors.
That first issue did two things, it spelled out what was wrong in the arts, and what we thought could be done to fix it.
But there was a third issue between the words. That was that we should think of all the arts together, not keep them apart. Musea was not a music zine, or painting zine, or writing zine, or film zine, it was all the above and more.
Within the first year, I heard from others that felt the same way. Among those were Tim Wood, editor of The Word, and a local arts activist, (see columnists,) and Greg Shanks, Bloom Music. Together the three of us cooked up the idea to set up an all day art festival that featured all the arts. There would be no limits to the type of art performed or displayed. We called it the Art Revolution Festival.
Together we found a place, Chumley's Bar and the Stout McCourt Art Gallery next door. Then we booked the talent, gathered the art and zines for displays, and set it up for Sunday afternoon, November 6,1993. We decided to make it free. We set up a fish bowl at the front table for donations. That actually worked very well and got us much more than had we charged $5 or so.
We displayed photographs, paintings, sculptures, and an exhibit of zines and underground publications - and I am still shaking my fist at whoever stole my zines, Meat Scientist and Shockbox! They were a display not a giveaway!
Besides the gallery, we had a stage for movies, videos, theater, poets, dancers, and musicians. Each group had about 15 minutes. Overall 26 artists performed or displayed their works. They ranged from Cathy Gould reading her poetry, to the rock band The End. Our largest audience came to see Polly Whiplash and All Her Cave Woman dressed in furry loincloths. They did a roast of Rush Limbaugh to a packed room.
Setting up the festival was an amazing amount of work. Tim and Greg wanted to do another. I loved the idea but bowed out. To their credit they did Art Revolution Festival II, III, and IV. Note the fourth one finally got belated Dallas media coverage.
Along the way Tim and Greg, got other festival organizers to help, Cathy Gould, Michael McMurray, and Steve Baker. When Chumley's closed, they moved the festival to Poor David's Pub.
Musea #22 talked about my visit to the Arts Revolution Festival II, April 17, 1994.
Musea #24 talked about the lineup for Arts Revolution Festival III, August, 1994.
Musea #29 talked about Arts Revolution Festival IV, January 29, 1995
My dream is to take this gem of an idea and turn it into an all arts center open to all, all the time. (See Musead the Ocean Liner / Art Center.)
Cathy Gould. Cathy Gould was always a supporter of artists in Dallas. I remember the first time I met her, she was our guest on my KNON talk show State of the Arts. She was a frail pale thin woman wearing a bright colored sun dress and a massive straw bonnet. She carried with her a huge bulging notebook that held all her poems. During the interview, she read some of them for the show.
My favorite work of hers is a cassette she made later titled, Pastiche Pickin Poet Pie, Cathy Gould & Friends, 1994. The recording is a blend of poetry and beat jazz music. It is a great live show with some fine musicians backing her up.
Right now Cathy is battling MS, and I wish her the best.
Chapter Eleven: XMAS STORIES.
Q. In this 200th People issue, fictional people count too. They also add up!
The December 1998 issue #74 started my annual Musea Xmas Story issues. I felt that people needed something more during the holidays, than another sales pitch. I thought they'd like a good story to read.
All were somehow connected to the holiday season. Most were a bit bittersweet. Here are some of the characters that I wrote about over the years.
Dot's father makes a playhouse for his daughter, then one for the city!
Aliens visit Earth but are most interested in our square bacteria.
Mr Weebler encounters the real Santa at his department store.
Penny dies and becomes a ghost, but she is not the only spirit in the neighborhood.
Can a harried dad get his son the Ranger 330 Toy Rifle that he wants?
Brother John chooses a new cane at the monastery.
Can the architect's wife find a treasure hidden in an antique mall full of items?
What happens during Christmas for Senlin, the greatest dancer of them all?
Leo Mars, the private eye, has to find why the rich man's son took his life.
A woman has a true vision of a murder and the police think she did it.
A bored brother and sister get treasure clues in their new Victorian mansion.
A drunk finds Santa's magic toy bag.
Bradley scoops up a treasure map from a dead gangster, and takes his best friend with him on a wild night's adventure.
Chapter Twelve: KIDS.
I wanted Musea to be for kid readers too. Many issues were written for them. Here are a few.
Moon Tea. Book with a collection of kid's poems and stories.
Musea Salutes Kids. #55. Includes Blocks, my idea for a new kind of building toy for both kids and adults, Why Children Should Be Allowed to Hate Classics, Corporate Art and Kids, and the Musea Reading Fund, not just for adults.
Tugboat. #61. Outline for a TV show for kids.
Essay on Education, #97. Treatise on educational reforms.
Cendrillon, The True Story of Cinderella, a retelling of the fairy tale. #110, and #111.
Players, A Game of Twelves. #113. Board game with rule book.
Kid's Film Ideas. #119.
A Bestiary. #120. Collection of poems about animals.
Book Rocket. #124. Idea for a kid's library inside a rocket shaped building.
Dot's Playhouse. #127. Xmas story that also outlined a city toy house for Dallas.
Kid's Issue. #133. Includes the play Red, and Poems to Grow On.
Engine Room on the Moon. #139. Fantasy poem with photos.
Tosuke's Tax. #147. A Judge Ooka of Ancient Japan, story in verse.
Library Book. #185. Sci-fi poem.
Children's Poem Issue. #191.
Musea also strongly advocates no ads for kids, period!
Chapter Thirteen: TV NETWORKS.
The 24 years of Musea have covered both the time before there was an online, and the first years after. When I grew up in the fifties, TV and the networks were king. Now that seems to be changing to more and more people watching shows online. TV shows still count, but networks are in flux.
Some of the most fun issues of Musea for me to make, were the three where I programmed a Musea network with shows I created. These three issues together suggested ideas for over 100 new TV shows.
Musea Prepares a TV Network. #61. Quote from the issue.
Musea just bought a TV network (play along please) and now we need a fall schedule, 24 hours a day, seven days a week - something fresh and new. Ta Da! Here it is, the Musea Channel with 42 new shows. So reader put down your remote...
The Rise and Fall Season. #125. Musea Programs a TV Network. Twenty five summaries of new shows.
The Rise and Fall Season. #168. Musea Programs a TV Network. Forty more show ideas.
Chapter Fourteen: MUSICIANS.
Q. People who know an Eb from a D#!
Q. Guitarists don't fret. Show some pluck!
Q. There is one thing that all Dallas musicians have in common - they have nothing in common! They are each different from each other. There is no Dallas Sound, there never has been, and that is something that makes this town so musically interesting.
12 By 12 Records. During the 80's I stopped playing in bands, and started a tiny co-op record company called 12 By 12. The idea was simple, each of 12 musicians or groups would contribute one finished song, and pay one twelfth of the costs to make a record. In turn each would get one twelfth of the albums made.
It was a good idea but even after 5 albums, and one CD, it never took off. The songs were hit and miss. Most were no different from the other local records out there. But most does not mean all. Some of the songs were downright classic achievements, and stand up to, or are better than, anything since. They are hit songs waiting for their trip to #1.
I took my eleven favorites from all the recordings, and put out a cassette titled, Tom's Favorites from 12 By 12. This recording is a first rate album that I think still stands up. Two musicians were instrumental in helping me get all the 12 By 12 albums out, and both were first rate musicians.
David Renke. This very tall and reserved man organized and led his group, The Source. He also played lead guitar on all their songs, and was the engineer that recorded their work. David also helped with all the 12 By 12 cover designs. No easy task when you have to somehow feature ten or more group photos on a single album cover.
My favorite recording of his was Angel, a song sung and written by Anthony Baugh. This is a passionate, elegant, voice and guitar, classic love song.
I lost touch with David when 12 By 12 stopped. The last time I saw him he told me that an accident had hurt his strumming hand and he no longer played guitar. I hope he can find a way around the injury. He is a major talent and should keep making music.
Scott Jacob Loehr. Scott also ran an in house studio. He recorded my songs during this time. He is an amazing pianist, composer, and arranger; and a fine vocalist when he wants to be. He also recorded others and helped get them on 12 By 12. My favorite song and recording of his was Love is Forever, sung by the singer Alayna Mosteller. Again this is a simple, but flawless recording. Alayna sings one of Scott's extremely passionate songs while Scott plays perfect piano accompaniment. Wonderful!
Scott breathes music. He also has perfect pitch. The only person I know that does.
When we were recording my songs at his house studio, we'd take breaks and he would show me some of his other work. His classical compositions are standouts. They got me writing music in that more formal style. His work is bold, melodic and powerful. He's a great admirer of Beethoven and it shows. This very gifted composer, pianist, performer, and engineer, deserves world fame.
12 By 12 stopped when Musea began. But that was not the end of it. In issue #23 I decided to bring it back. My headline read, Musea Gets 12 By 12 Record Co for a Song.
Then in issue #25 Musea announced its first release, Tom's Favorites from 12 By 12, featuring many notable musicians.
Now Musea Records is a one person record company for my recordings as Hunkasaurus and His Pet Dog Guitar. See later.
Most of the notable musicians from Dallas or the area around here are strangers to me. LIke you I have heard of their names but have never met them. Most but not all. There are a select few that I have stories about. Let's start with two great clubs.
Two Clubs. There were two notable nightclubs within walking distance of my home. Travel in one direction and you would get to Strictly Taboo, the split level jazz club with it's pizza ovens and flamingoes in the decor.
Go another direction and you would reach Mother Blues, a two story white house that was turned into a bar, pool room, and blues club. I heard blues great, Freddie King play there.
Freddie King. I knew his piano player. He put on a dynamic show with a powerful fast urban blues style. For some reason a bunch of us went to his house one day. I think it was because someone needed to pick up or deliver something. It was a small ranch style house with a harried wife and lots of kids running around. It was located only a few blocks away from the Inwood Theater.
My piano player friend claimed that after pay day, Freddie liked to host a poker game so he could win his money back! See Youtube for more.
Bugs Henderson. Here was a local legend that deserved to be a national name. When any notable musician came to town, they'd end up jamming with Bugs. See Youtube.
I had first heard him play guitar in Tyler. I thought then that he was the fastest guitar player I'd ever seen. In the mid sixties, he was part of Mouse and the Traps. They had a regional hit with a Dylan sound alike song called Public Execution, recorded in Tyler at Robin Hood Brians Studio. Later he formed his own band, Bugs Henderson and the Shuffle Kings.
The only time I ever met him was at the first concert tour of Paul McCartney that began here in 1976, at the Tarrant County Convention Center in Fort Worth. I was searching out my seat down front, when I saw him.
"Hey aren't you Bugs Henderson?"
"What a treat for me. You are one great guitar player...
"... and you are sitting in my seat!"
We check ticket stubs, and he left.
Willie Nelson. I wrote and recorded a song called The Ballad of Willie Nelson based on Nelson's biography. I thought I would send him a copy. I found his address and sent it. His lawyers wrote back and said they would not allow him to hear it!
I suspect they are worried that if he ever wrote his own ballad, I would sue. That is the farthest thing from my mind. I just wanted to share it with him. The song had already been released, so anyone could hear it - anyone except the person it was written about! Here are the first three dangerous lines that he must never hear!
I was born in 1933.
Parents left and it was just my sister and me.
Grandparents raised us. We did alright...
American Blues. Look what I found on youtube. Your Love is True/ Say So. This is my first song on record. This is also a fine example of what every record in the 1967 summer of love, sounded like. Both sides are still good songs, with good music, good arrangements and - with every 60's cliche in the lyrics!
I wrote Your Love Is True in Tyler, Texas and it ended up recorded by the Dallas group, American Blues, two of which went on to a much much much more famous group. Here is the story.
It was the 60's, groups and combos were everywhere. The Five Americans, out of Oklahoma, had some notable national hits with two personal favorites, I See the Light, and Western Union.
Both were produced by Dale Hawkins, a music producer who was known for his 50's classic recording, Susie Q. See Youtube.
Dale was looking for original songs for another group of his called the American Blues. Through some Tyler, Texas connections, one of my songs reached him. He liked it and wanted his group to record it in the same style as the Five Americans.
But first some tinkering. He changed my lyrics, the title, added two other composers to the credits, and misspelled my name on the record!
If you listen, you'll hear the new lyrics have just about every late 60's cliche in them! I promise you I did not add them ... most of them anyway.
The American Blues recorded my song, Your Love is True (originally called, Your Lovin Trip before they changed the title - it was the 60's remember,) and it became the A side of a single,Your Love is True / Say So. The flip side is pretty good too! My song got a good review in Billboard, but no national airplay. And I have never seen any royalties. Now hear both sides on Youtube.
The American Blues tried some other recordings, but nothing worked and they disbanded. Two of the group, Frank Beard and Dusty Hill, joined Houston guitar player, Billy Gibbons, and formed, Z Z Top. So two of the three members of Z Z Top recorded my song! See if you can find a copy of the single. It is still a good song, a two sided hit, and a great 60's recording.
Some musicians I was a little closer too.
Karen Bella. She lived up to her name, Bella, a beautiful woman, and a talented singer, composer and musician. I had written a rock opera and love story, called John and Martha, and I asked her to help me record it. We sang the leads. I found some others to fill out the cast. I recorded the songs, and the cast sang their parts. This was in the 80's.
Since then I have lost touch with her. But while I was writing this I looked Karen Bella up online and found Show and Tell, her complete first album, on youtube. I'm still impressed with it. The one thing I've always remembered about her songs was that she rhymed holster with quarter!
Willie Griffin. Here is one great songwriter that has never yet got his foot in the door. His songs are simple and captivating - though his recordings are rough and need a professional touch. The songs remind me of Al Green's best singles. Those looking for great songs would be wise to look him up! Youtube, has videos of the Grip Records, I Love You and Where There's Smoke There's Fire - both with a really out of tune guitar!
Update! Here is a shock! Within days of writing this, I learned that a 45 of Griffin's listed on Ebay as, Willie Griffin mega rare fragile soul indie I Love You / Grip 45, was sold for $887.77! Hope he shares in that sale. He is one nice guy that deserves success. P.S. that makes the copies of my first 12 By 12 album, that featured Willie Griffin's recording I Noticed, all the more valuable! See 12 By 12.
Dave Somogyi. Here is a gifted guitarist that one could describe as bluegrass meets Classical Gas. We were glad to mention him in Musea. Youtube.
Wo Fat. This is a three piece group that's been described as a stoner rock psychedelic doom band. It is made up of the owners of Crystal Clear Studios where I record. They tour here and in Europe, a very busy and popular band. Youtube.
Sara Hickman. Sara is a very popular Texas singer/songwriter now living in Austin. Though I never met her in person, Musea did print a poem of hers with her illustrations in issue #22. She is also known for recording music for children, plus she does a lot of charity work. Texas Musician Magazine in October, reported in November that she planned to retire! What? Youtube.
Doug Rhone. Doug was a high school friend in Tyler. Though a year younger he was always musically ahead of me; better guitar player, better equipment, better groups, more recording activity, more jobs playing, more success. He was a creative talent, solid songwriter, and a technically excellent studio musician. His group, Gladstone, signed with ABC Records in '72, and recorded a fine first album that contained a sizable hit with A Piece of Paper, that reached #45 on the national charts.
He later ended up in California where for decades he has been a guitar player, back up singer, and sometimes co composer, for Neil Diamond. Youtube.
Here are more notes on music.
Austin. To me Austin is overrated, SXSW has gone to the corporate sponsors, and no musician there can get a national hit! It has potential - yes, promise - yes, hits - no. I often comment here in Dallas, If music goes south, it ends up in Austin.
Denton. College town, Denton, has UNT, University of North Texas, known for jazz music; as well as a pretty busy music scene throughout the city. But again this is a city where there is promise in the air that just does not deliver much more than rumors of greatness.
Kerrville Folk Festival. This folk festival held near Kerrville Texas, has been running yearly since 1971. It should be on everyone's music map. It almost is now. I think the future looks even brighter.
MTV = MT Video = Empty Video. The TV channel first invigorated music in the 80's, with a resurgence of some fine hit songs illustrated with creative video performances. Then it destroyed music as visual pyrotechnics over ran music quality. Now videos are so pricey for a musician to make that virtually none but a handful can afford them. Time to end videos - period. When we do, that will switch the emphasis back to the music.
TeXas Video Showdown. I've done a TeXas Video Showdown on Youtube that I bill as the worst video ever made. It is bad on purpose, to challenge the entire video mess. Here are some quotes from posts on the showdown.
Q. Coke or Pepsi? / Swift or Beyonce?
You will never hear a protest song on mainstream radio. That means there is no revolt allowed in music. That's why the revolt in music!
For all musicians out there, unless you are one of 5 main pop stars, you have been marginalized out of a career by 3 CEO's that run the business, only promote teen pop from the same few, and refuse to allow music to change in 15 years. (Warners, Universal, and Sony, control 80%). Time to change this.
While a few pop stars are making multi-millions the rest of us are selling a few t-shirts and CD's while playing half empty clubs. That's no way to treat thousands of musicians. Make music fair again. Let quality count. Join the Dallas rebellion or start your own.
Dallas Music Videos TV Show. During the 80's, Kathy Blaylock ran this cable access video show, that spotlighted local musicians. She was a gracious host and in between running the videos, she'd interview musicians. I got to be on there a few times. Just recently we met again as Facebook friends!
Buddy Magazine. Buddy Magazine, the Original Texas Music Magazine, is a newsprint monthly named after Buddy Holly. It has been continuously supporting the local music scene for decades. For that I salute them. Somehow in all those years they never mentioned me or anyone I knew. For that I take it back.
Texas Music Magazine. This new kid on the magazine block covers the music of Texas. I like it because it covers all kinds of music and is not stuck in a genre. They even printed a fine picture and blurb of me playing in the Inwood Box Office. Collectible issue?
Neil Young's 3,000 Protest Song List. There is an online page of over 3,000 protest song links on NeilYoung.com that is open to all musicians. Two of my songs, AOL Can Go and Tank Tomorrow, and Peace Sign, often are in the top ten. When was the last time you heard a protest song on mainstream radio? Have our airwaves, been so bleached that every station in the country has to play happy thoughts from Stepford Wives?
Question, Who Listens to the Media Anymore? Now here is something strange to report. I've not gotten much press, but I have gotten some in the early part of the last few decades from both the Dallas daily, and the Dallas weekly. And both garnered the same amount of publicity - zero reaction from all their many, many, many, readers. You would think their articles would help me. No, they never have.
Yet during this same period, when I would be mentioned in some girl zine in some far away state, with 50 readers tops; I would get a fine response and some great letters! Figure that out!
Hunkasaurus and His Pet Dog Guitar. It was the mid 90's. Trying to keep a band going was a headache that I didn't want anymore, and 12 By 12 Records was pretty much over, so I decided to go solo. That way I could depend on me showing up!
I had been working on a new type of rockabilly song, performed on a single guitar. I would play bass, rhythm, and lead, all at once. I later called it my combo guitar style. I found four songs that fit that style and decided to record a cassette. I went to Summit Burnett Studios where Pam Irwin was my audio engineer. I liked the sound she got out of my voice and guitar. We recorded four songs, that included three Elvis hits, Treat Me Nice, Heartbreak Hotel, and That's All Right Mama.
But nothing happened from it except some good reviews from friends. The cassette went to storage in my closet.
Hey guys, it's the 90's! Don't you know you're supposed to over produce your songs with those obnoxious electronically simulated wind chime sounds and see how many tracks you can overdub in order to make your product totally unhuman?... Oh you want to record music the way people naturally play it? How novel! How refreshing! But it will never work. Not corporate enough. Keep up the fight. The true idea of what you're attempting to do is captured on that tape. - Bud Bushardt (See radio.)
Yes you are my new inspiration. I appreciate your sending me the music. You are rocktastic! Wow. It stays in my car for further joy rides. Brilliant interpretation of the Warner Brothers (Bugs Bunny) Theme song - may I cover it? I will credit your genius. - Sara Hickman. (See music above.)
By the 90's, I was playing Box Office Concerts at the Inwood and developing a sizable playlist of songs that fit my type of singing and playing guitar. Somewhere along the way I decided to try to record many of my 50, then 100, then 120 plus song list.
Pam Irwin. I wanted to work with Pam again, but first I had to find her!
After months of looking, I found her teaching audio engineering at Cedar Valley Community College.
I contacted her and she said she could record me at the college, in the summer, when school was out, at a fair price per hour. I jumped at the chance.
We recorded that summer and for many years that followed. I recorded six of the nine Hunkasaurus CD's with her there.
Being a teacher, she taught me a lot. Not only was I recoding, but I was learning. By the end of those years, I could say she took me from an amateur level musician to a professional level recording musician.
I've mentioned David Byrne before because some say I look a little like him. Before recording with Pam, I wanted to meet her and talk about the project. We had not seen each other in years since I recorded the four song cassette, so to help her recognize me, I said I'm tall and some say I look like David Byrne. We met, and she took me to her office. On the wall was a gold record of hers for her engineering work on David Byrne's True Stories soundtrack!
Pam had a lot of people stories. She had known many famous musicians. Every once in a while she'd tell me about some of the musicians she had worked with. She didn't like Paul Shaffer from Letterman's late night show, at all. She loved, loved, loved, everything about Ronnie Wood from the Rolling Stones when she worked with him. And she had a great Ray Charles story.
She was doing the audio for a performance by Ray Charles. The mikes had to be placed just so, for the blind Charles. Someone, the set designer, or stage director, moved one. Pam saw this and began to walk on stage to fix it. By the time she was halfway to his piano, Ray said, "I got it Pam," and he put the mike back into position. Somehow he knew the sounds of her steps and what she was coming to fix!
Pam's college teaching schedule got busier and busier. There was less and less time to record me in the summer. And I wanted to record more and more, and all year round. So we ended the run, and I began to look for a new studio and a new engineer. I found both at Crystal Clear Sound.
Studio "B". Talking about my project to the folks at Crystal Clear Sound, they suggested that Studio "B" would be perfect for me. They had Studio "A", a huge room that could accommodate a small orchestra, and Studio "B", used for mixing, or a single musician. That sounded perfect. I asked who would I be working with, and is he easy to work with. They said Nolan Brett, and there would be no problem.
Nolan Brett. They were right. Nolan was really easy and professional to work with. He is technically excellent and dependable, but he also has a fine ear for what is working and what needs another take. I soon learned that a second opinion from him was what I needed to get the best recording. Together we did my next 3 CDs, until I had finished that big Box Office set list.
Finally on July 16, 2014, I finished my ten year recording project with my song Roll. I remember the moment in Studio B. I was doing the second background vocal on the last line of the last chorus of Roll. While I was singing, I began to jump up and down with my hands waving in the air! IT WAS DONE!
Ten years - 120+ songs - finished!!!
Footnote. I still didn't know the total of how many songs I had recorded. So one day I did the final tally. I thought it would be over 120 but I didn't know how much. Turned out to be exactly 150 !!!!
Hunkasaurus and His Pet Dog Guitar, 150 song, 9 CD, signed, tin, outside the box, set. There is a very, very, very, limited number of Tin Box Sets of all 9 CDs and all 150 songs plus booklet, for $100.
The songs can also be purchased one at a time as streaming singles, or in nine different CDs streaming online from most of the main outlets. You can also preview all 150 by searching Youtube with CDBaby + Hunkasaurus.
Musea covered Music in a lot of it's pages. Here is a sampling of those articles.
Psychology of Keys. #12. You can tell what the music will be like by the key it is in.
Letter to ASCAP. #22. This was about the danger of the consolidation of music into too few hands. ASCAP should help all musicians by opposing this consolidation. No response.
Why I Hate Bands. #26. Bands were cutting edge 50 years ago, not today.
Q. To all bands - you've had 50 years to try to imitate the Beatles, and you are not as good - honest, none of you - yes really. Give it up. Do something different. Move forward, or move out of the way of those who are changing music.
Rating the 60's Concerts, by Woody Stock. #33, #34, and #35.
30 Ways You Know You're Listening to Corporate Rock. #44.
Guerilla Music. Fighting the Big 6, the Corporate Art Music Companies. #68.
Now it's down to three, Warners, Universal, and Sony, or W.U.S.
Five Doors to the Art Revolution, Door #1 Music. #162, and a Youtube video.
That Guitar Strap. #165. I think I still have the guitar strap in storage somewhere, but I can't find it, which is frustrating. I really used it up. It was so beat up that it had separated into two strips, the top design cloth and the bottom backing. I remember switching to the solid black one I use now. The lost strap was a black backed strap printed with numerous rows of red and white squares on the front side. So why is it worth talking about? I was not the only one who liked that strap design. Some very famous musicians liked it too.
Elvis wore that same guitar strap on his TV comeback special when doing Trouble and Guitar Man, and Jim Hendrix wore it at Woodstock when playing Voodoo Child, and The Star Spangled Banner. This was a very popular 60's model!
NPR 200 Song Challenge. #174. NPR is locked into a format called AAA. They say it stands for adult album alternative. I say it stands for average, awful average. I challenged them to a music quality contest.
My Big List of online 200 great songs, versus any 200 of your best. Here is how it would work. NPR you play any thing from your playlist, and I'll match it with something better on mine. Then I get a turn and you match. We'll do that 10, 30, 50,100, or 200, times and see which music the listeners favor.
They never responded, of course. See net for the THE BIG LIST -100 Plus Favorite Music from The Internet and the World.
To Sing Better. #189. Simple Tips that I've learned, that might help others.
Q. How can you stand out , if you have to fit in?
Hunkasaurus & His Pet Dog Guitar. Musea also covered my music career as Hunkasaurus and His Pet Dog Guitar, (the dumbest name I could think of.) Here are some of the articles:
Hunk's first Cassette, Hunk's Resume, Lyrics, Lyrics, Lyrics, The Hunkasuarus Songbook, Music Recording Issue #134 including my Discography, World Request and Dedication, Combo Guitar Style, Box Office Concerts, with photos by David McGhee, Inwood Lounge Concerts, The 10 Year Music Project including the 150 Song List, TeXas Video Showdown, and Pennies from Heaven (report on streaming royalties I'm getting.)
Also in February 2013, I posted online my LIST OF FIVE MUSICAL FIRSTS.
1. Leading music revolution.
2. Played Box Office Concerts.
3. Has set up the first Big List of the best music on the net.
4. Has developed the Combo Style of playing guitar.
5. First official national release was a 150 Song, 9 CD, Outside the Box Set.
Chapter Fifteen: ARCHITECTURE, THEATER, DANCE, and FASHION.
Musea covered music, art, writing, and film the most; but all the arts are important and have a home in these pages. Here is some of the coverage of those other arts and the people connected to them.
Architecture and Sculpture.
When building in your mind,
no need to be foiled.
Build them high and
build them in gold.
Top 10 Architecture in Dallas. #16. This article was a salute to all the architects involved in these ten structures: The buildings of Fair Park, The Lipstick Building or Stouffer Hotel, The Two Gold Buildings across from NorthPark, The Kimball Museum (Fort Worth), Old Red Courthouse, Dancing Fountains at the First Interstate Bank Tower, Texas Commerce Bank Tower Dome, H.L. Green Building, The Crescent, Dakota Restaurant Entrance. Plus a special mention for the following; the Pegasus Neon Sign on top of the Magnolia Building, Reunion Tower because it looks like a microphone, The sculpture garden at the Trammel Crow Center, and Big Tex.
Musea Garden. #82. This Musea issue showed a fantasy garden filled with plants, sculpture, and architecture.
Architecture Issues. #124, #196. Groundbreaking buildings! Issue #124 displayed 22 of my ideas for buildings, and issue #196, 17 more!
Sculpture Issue. #197. Thirty ideas for sculpture. This included the 3 Symbols sculpture. I also asked this hypothetical question, Was Michelangelo a chiseler?
Three of my buildings deserve a second look. They are designed for everyone.
Dot's Playhouse. #127. Dot was a fictional character in one of my Xmas short stories. She asked her dad for a playhouse as her Christmas gift. He developed the idea into a playhouse for all the kids in the city. That is a great nonfiction idea too. Imagine a Victorian mansion, set up in Fair Park, where every room has toys for display or play, and every kid in the city is welcome to visit.
Dream House. #140. My dream house would be many things besides a house for me. It would be an art gallery, concert hall, mini hotel, theater, lounge, library, office, workshop, and chapel. This issue showed the design and looked into all the rooms. Stay tuned for more on this online - I can say no more at this time.
Musead. #71, #144, #150, and #170. Musead, the art center, is one big idea. In it's largest version, it is an art complex the size of a major amusement park for both adults and children. I have suggested this version of Musead be the size of an ocean liner! In a Plan B, Musead would be the size of a normal art center with three main rooms: a stage and cafe, a shop, and a museum.
Q. The world's a stage and most of us aren't even in the union.
Theater in Dallas is either mainstream clone stuff first played in NYC years ago, or marginalized theater ... that I don't even know about. This is not a theater town, except for Katherine Owens.
Katherine Owens. She is the founder and artistic director of the Undermain Theater. I don't know her, though I used to see her when she lived in my neighborhood. But this I do know. She is dedicated to theater, and is fighting fierce odds in this town to bring in anything new. She often switches her time from working here, to working in NYC where they appreciate her talent better.
Broadway Theater of the Absurd, or The Great Hype Way. #45. In this issue Musea suggested some theater reforms. The main gist of it was to make theater more accessible. Set up a movie type multiplex center with many theaters and lots of parking. Each stage would have a theater production. There would be all kinds of theater including drama and comedy, big productions and one act plays, lectures and other kinds of live shows. Then charge the public the same price as film tickets.
Emily Cox. Musea got this letter from actress Emily Cox, issue #36.
Dear Musea, As an actress, I highly resent the fact that to even get my foot in the door of professional theatre, I have to surrender my art and my earnings to an agent controlled by the demands of corporate theater who cares nothing for me or my craft. I feel this is a disgusting display of corporate control over the theater which has become increasingly evident in the last few years in the dwindling trickle of significant theatrical output. For these and other reasons, I will join in your war to return real art to the hands of the people, who don't even realize that they are receiving a homogenized, pasteurized version of it. I will use your symbol [AACA logo] on my name cards and pass them out liberally at all auditions. Thank you for bringing such important issues to light and providing us with a forum for discussion. Keep up the good work - Emily Cox.
Ten Short and Short-Short Plays. (Online book.) This is my collection of ten of my best plays - most first appeared in the issues of Musea. This is now streaming online at all the major book websites.
Modern Dance. Do you like modern dance? Did anyone raise their hand? Is it fun to go and see a dance recital? Do you understand what is going on? Do you want to leave right now?
The Revolution in Dance. #17. This issue suggested steps to make dance fun again, including Story Dancing, and Hum and Move Dancing.
The Hokey Pokey is Okey Dokey, or Musea Dances into the New Year. #128. This film issue had three script ideas for dance movies including Terpsichore, an assortment of short films of new dances set to classical music, A Midsummer Night's Dream Ballet, and Dance Party a night of dances and modern music at 500 X.
Swanella and the Doll. #148. My version of the ballet Coppelia.
Senlin. #182. My favorite fictional dancer, and according to this Xmas story the most famous dancer in the world, is Senlin. Read about this idol of millions, her dance career, her personal life, and her take on dancing.
Q. She's a fashion plate. What a dish!
Q. More fashion, less faux-ion.
HouseDallas. #15. HouseDallas, all one word, is my idea for a fashion house of assorted indie designers here in Dallas.
Catty About the Cat Walk or a Damsel in This Dress. #56. Musea looks at fashion designers and their accessories.
AACA T-Shirt. This issue also offered up one of the most popular items for sale from Musea, the AACA t-shirts. They were gray shirts with red lettering showing the AACA logo, that stands for Artists Against Corporate Art. Few were made. These are very rare, very scarce, but a must have for art revolutionaries!
The Fashion Issue. #179. Here was an issue filled with drawings of my fashion creations. I tried to make the designs simple, playful, sophisticated, and sensual. Note the grand finale piece, the multi person, Paper Dolls dress.
Mystery Designer. Finally in the fashion category, I vaguely remember that at my KNON State of the Arts radio show we had a Dallas based, clothes designer for our guest - this was in the mid 80's - that had designed a series of clothes that could serve as more than one thing. For example, the woman could wear the garment tucked in as a shirt, or wear it smoothed out as a dress. That sort of thing. She even advocated dresses for men!
Anyway she was a fun guest for the show, and I didn't think anymore about her. I later heard that she sold her start up clothes design company for a gazillion dollars! Wow! But who was she? ... If you know let me know.
Chapter Sixteen: MEDIA.
Q. Musea, All the Muse that's hip to print.
Q. Isn't something wrong when the critic who reviews art makes more money than the artist who makes art?
Telemarketer For Dallas Morning News - True story.
Telemarketer: Am I talking to the man of the house?
Me: What is this about?
Tel: The Dallas Morning news.
Me: Oh I HATE the Dallas Morning news!
Tel: You're the third person to tell me that today.
Here are some notable Musea articles about our local media, the media in general, and the people involved.
First lets get this out of the way. The daily newspaper, DaMN (Dallas Morning News), or the weekly newspaper DOA (Dallas Observer), have always been tough on me, and all my artist friends. They are horrible for Dallas. The town deserves better. Here is story about those two and Musea.
Dallas Morning News and Dallas Observer, with Musea in the Middle. Through a number of issues, Musea spelled out many problems with the daily newspaper.
The first issue was titled, Dallas Morning News, Art Coverage: Why Dallas Deserves Better, Special Musea Report. #21. In this issue I monitored how much coverage DMN gave local artists in a metroplex of 3 million people, over one week, April 4-10.
Results, there were 155 total reviews. 143 were of mainstream corporate art, and 12 were local art reviews. That is 9% local art reviews. And of those local reviews most were very mainstream, including four for theater productions, two for architecture reviews, two gallery reviews, and one for the Dallas Symphony.
I sent my results in a letter to DMN publisher / editor Burl Osborne before publishing it and got no response. But I did note that in the April 17th issue of the daily they began a (short lived) once a month series of Unsung Heroes, "... a periodic series examining unsung talent in the area."
Finally DMN responded to me. I received a letter dated June 6th from Ralph Langer, Senior Vice President and Executive Editor that began, This is in response to your recent newsletter which you sent to Burl Osborne...
He, the Senior VP, ended his confusing and confuscating rant with, Whatever total might be correct at any given time, obviously the seasonal fluctuations account for variations more than any other factor.
I printed their response in full, and then added, my counter response under the headline, Dallas Morning News Responds. #23.
I began my rebuttal with, Your nit-picking, and error filled response is missing the point; your coverage of local arts is totally inadequate. Your own writers confirm it in talking to me. They end up saying 'talk to my editors, they're responsible.' So I am.
Then the Dallas Observer weekly, ever the snarky leader in journalism, jumped in with their take. #25.
Before I tell you the Observer's take, know this fact. The Dallas Observer ran a weekly column (lately they have dumped virtually all columns) called Belo Watch, Belo being the then owners of the Dallas Morning News. Here is a quote from the Dallas Observer, BeloWatch column August 18-24, 1994.
They're (Dallas Morning News) even free to refuse to talk to BeloWatch (Dallas Observer) themselves - a right they exercise with weekly consistency. But it did seem amusingly lunkheaded for News executive editor Ralph Langer to offer a preposterously sober response to a lengthy rant in the May issue of Musea, a Dallas 'zine published by Tom Hendricks, a longtime usher and ticket-taker at the Inwood Theater.
Hendricks whose newsletter carries the slogan 'Art News and reviews for those who oppose the status quos,' had attacked the News for allegedly failing to cover the local art scene. Hendricks reported that only 12 of 155 reviews he surveyed during a single week covered the work of local artists.
Five weeks later, Langer responded, ...
Hendricks, to his credit, responded immediately below, with the 'zine equivalent of Ralph, you ignorant slut!
"Your nit-picking, (and error filled) response is missing the point; your coverage of local arts is totally inadequate! ... Do you for 1 minute seriously think that 12 reviews in one week cover the entire culture of the 3 million people that live in the metroplex?"
It's nice to see News editors enjoy a free exchange of views with at least one area publication.
Musea did three full issues on newspapers. I wanted to suggest reforms that would help get the media away from articles about the scandal of the few and back to articles on the issues of the millions. I also advocated that the only way to have an independent newspaper was to get rid of ads and the corporate pressure from advertisers that distorts news.
Q. A tree is a horrible thing to waste.
Q. What is black and white and crud all over?
Q. The numbing down of America.
Musea on Newspapers. #40. Twenty short articles on all aspects of newspapers, including this quote.
As an art revolutionary I found out early that corporate art and media go hand in hand. And if you're an artist opposed to corporate art, you're an artist boycotted by the media - out of business!
Special Issue: Newspapers! #73. The main article was, The Good the Bad, and the No Ad. This issue spelled out what a good alt biweekly might be like.
Newsland. #142. This issue listed 91 points on how to build a better newspaper. This issue also included the Human Decency Pledge. Here it is in full.
As a member of the media, we pledge that we will strive for reporting that takes into account basic human decency. We will, whenever possible, not show pictures and / or footage of wounded and bleeding people, pictures, and / or footage of people being murdered or killed in accidents, pictures and / or footage of the corpses of people at the scene of violence or accident, pictures and / or footage of men, women, or children, crying due to the injury or death of others.
Musea signed it. Then I sent it out to major local and national media outlets, such as ABC, CBS, NBC, PBS, Fox, NYT, USA Today, NPR, and DMN. None have ever responded.
Chapter Seventeen. THE ART OF LOVE, FIVE COUPLES.
Q. Title of a Two Volume Collection of Love Poetry:
Vol. 1, Roses are Red, Vol. 2, Violets are Blue.
Q. I hob with others but I nob with you!
Romance is a big part of the arts. As I was working on this issue, I came across five couples where both he and she are gifted artists and known to the indie world. Here they are.
Gregory K.H. Bryant / Llori Bryant - Stein. He is one of the best artists of our times as well as a gifted essayist, poet, and more - see artists, and see Musea columnists. She is a zinester known for the zine, Wormfest. She is also an artist and a tattooed lady. We ran her nude photo in #9 showing off her tattoos, and next to it Gregory's poem describing them! Washington D.C.
Doug Holland / Stephanie Webb. He was a zinester that wrote Pathetic LIfe, and the founder and editor of Zine World, the zine review zine. She was a zinester that wrote Crawfish. See the zine section for the story of their on and off romance.
Michael Helsem / Melanie Pruit. He wrote one of the best and most thoughtful books of this era in The Theory And Practice of Olgarchic Collectivism, under the pseudonym graywgvern. See below. And she, is a fine writer, best known for her film blog, Confessions of a Movie Queen. Dallas.
Michael Helsem. Helsem, under the pseudonym, graywgvern has written an astounding book, The Theory And Practice of Olgarchic Collectivism. To me the title may be over complicated for such a clear and profound collection of thoughts and sayings. The book reads like a modern day equivalent of Pensees, by Blaise Pascal. I can't praise this work enough. It is a solid addition to the world's classics. Here are some of the shortest entries.
To be lonely is to experience solitude as a victim.
It is the magicians privilege to disbelieve in magic.
I keep struggling against the false belief that to be something not yet defined is to be useless.
Fred Woodworth / Iris J. Arneson. I know these two know each other and I think they might be now or once were more than friends? He is the gifted writer, printer, and publisher of many notable zines and publications - see zines. And she is the writer of The Opera Glass (which he prints up), plus assorted books on opera. Tucson.
Dave Boyle / Mye Hoang. I've never met Mye's husband Dave, but I know he is a talented film director, writer, editor, and actor. His latest film is Man from Reno. I've worked with Mye at the Inwood Theater, and always been highly impressed by her big talents, all in a petite frame! This charming woman loves film, has written her own scripts, worked in the film business, and founded the Asian Film Festival of Dallas in 2002.
I also think she has a latent gift for photography. Example: we worked together at the Inwood, and she once had the assignment to make a poster of photos of all the staff. Each photo caught the personality of that person to a 'T'. I don't know this couple's home base. They are usually on the road somewhere!
Chapter Eighteen: BIOLOGY.
Q. Everything in physics has a wave function - so wave back!
What does science writing have to do with an art and media zine like Musea? Why print ideas on biology, astronomy, and the origin of life? Why not? Art is full of science and science ideas, and science contains some of the best stories and characters!
My zine has featured articles on my interest in the sciences, culminating in the recent release of my extra huge Sci-fi novel, Writings in Science, A History of the Future, a Novel in Stories, Essays, Poems and Plays. WIS is partly a collection of the many science articles, poems, plays, and stories, that were first printed in Musea. Most of the following are incorporated into the novel. See also WIS reviews on the last pages of this issue.
New Science Studies. #81. Fun fractured facts in science.
Roggs Report. #118. An alien tries to interpret all human culture through one 1950s science magazine.
Bio Musea. #122. Three Essays on Life; Where Is It, What Is It, and Discuss Among Yourselves.
Lemy Lime. #138. Short story of two research scientists dealing with corporation pressure on their test results.
Engine Room on the Moon. #139. Kid's poem.
Recent Ideas in Biology. Catabolism and Anabolism #171.
Musea Looks at Why We Sleep. #174.
Library Book. #185. Kid is abducted by one track minded aliens.
WIS, Writings in Science. Outline of my sci-fi novel. #187 and #188.
List of Ideas That Are Original By me - Biology. #189.
Updates on the Sci-Fi novel Writings in Science. #199.
Sci-bio-evolution. There used to be an online newsgroup called sci.bio.evolution that I loved. It allowed me to suggest lots of sci ideas and get comments from highly educated others. That process, plus following the threads of interesting topics, gave me a second education in science. After many years the newsgroup has closed down. I am not sure why. I miss it and the people I met there.
Josh Hayes. Hayes was notable as a great newsgroup moderator for the site. I've not seen his equal. With gentle humor he managed to keep the posters off personal assaults and on topic. I think he was from Portland or Seattle.
David Darling. Through the SBE newsgroup I developed my ideas about the importance of UV light on the origin of life, OOL. My suggestion is that life began as the most stable chemical response to the UV onslaught at that time.
Through many years I had built up arguments in favor of the idea. At the same time, scientist and science writer David Darling, author of many books on all aspects of science, was developing a very large online science encyclopedia that continues to grow to this day at DavidDarling.info. He was nice enough to reprint my UV paper on his site, Ultraviolet Light and Its Role in the Origin of Life.
Darling is also an accomplished musician with some fine recordings available, and he is the center of a big circle of Facebook friends, including me. England.
William L. Hunt. Hunt was a fellow poster on the bio newsgroup. I was always impressed by his remarks to my posts and read his replies with care. Curiosity got the best of me and I wondered what this secretive man did for a living, figuring he was some science professor somewhere. Turns out he was one of those computer photo artists who made portraits of people out of hundreds of smaller related photographs!
Armen Y. Mulkidjanian. Occasionally I would e-mail my thoughts to notable researchers after reading their science papers. Most would not reply, though a surprising number did. One that did was Mulkidjanian.
Dr. Armen Mulkidjanian is a scientist out of Osnabrueck, Germany. His papers showed interest in both the OOL and what part UV played in it.
Where I suggested a UV connection to the origin of life from a few thought arguments, he and his team were carrying out experiments and publishing papers. I think they may be close to making some key breakthroughs.
Many think we will never know how life began. I think we may know soon. Life is the most stable reaction to the UV onslaught of energy, and nucleobases are excellent at dealing with UV light. That is one of the clues that I think will lead to further discoveries .
Here is an e-mail response I got from Dr. Mulkidjanian concerning my thoughts on his science paper, On the Origin of Life in the Zinc World. Search the net for all his papers.
Dear Tom, several years ago you have sent me a letter with suggestion to pursue further the topic of the light-driven origin of life. Although it took some time to find physically plausible solutions for several problems related to the light-driven abiogenesis, it has found to be possible to produce a realistic scenario and even to prove it. The results are described in the two papers that are freely accessible from the home page of Biology Direct (www.biology-direct.com).
Thank you once more for your encouragement (and check the Acknowledgements section of the first paper!) With best regards Armen.
Armen Y. Mulkidjanian, Ph.D. University of Osnabrueck, School of Physics and School of Biology/Chemistry ... Osnabrueck, Germany.
John H. Chalmers. Somehow during this period, I got to know John Chalmers and began e-mailing my bio ideas to him. He is a scientist from San Diego, home of the Scripps Research Institute.
Through a long career in the sciences Chalmers has gained a massive amount of science knowledge and science insight, with a real expertise in more than one area. He has been kind enough to listen to my ideas, and respond to many of them. We often share interesting science articles. He can be a tough critic of my speculations, but he backs his arguments with facts and data that keeps my ideas on their toes. I have learned to both love and respect his side of things.
I have also learned about his many talents in the arts. Chalmers is full of surprises. He is an occasional actor, he has tossed off a few short plays that are quite sophisticated, and he is fascinated by atonal music and those involved with it.
Chapter Nineteen. ONLINE.
Q. Duke of Url.
Things change. The number of readers of my printed zine, the one published and passed around, reached a peak and has dropped. Right now it is somewhat hard to find, (copies at Lucky Dog Books, Half Priced Books (main store), Curiosities, wherever you found this copy, and through the mail.
While the number of Dallas readers has declined, the number of readers of my online zine, has risen.
I have lived through three major revolutions in the arts: Rock and Roll, Zines /Desktop Publishing, and now the Internet.
Jethro Bodine summed up computers well when he said, Granny, not machines - computers! Why they're cross the tracks and up the road from plain ol' machines!
Here are some Musea issues on computers, and some notable online people.
The Box. #64. Back in February 1990, I suggested my vision of the future of computers. I saw them condensing all into one box that was all these things; a phone, jukebox, radio, TV, gallery, library, camera, typewriter, printer, journal, etc. Then in the last line I suggested that all of this would someday be reduced to a screen on a pair of glasses! That vision came true 23 years later, with Google Glass, 2013.
Musea Announces It's On the Net. #69. We went online with this url, musea.digitalchainsaw.com.
Surf's Up! The Musea Website is Launched or All You Ever Needed To Know About the Internet - Click! #70. I actually got a website for Musea before I had ever been online. That was due to Donna Turman, the first of two webmasters that have donated their time for Musea.
Donna Turman. Donna set up the Musea website and added each monthly issue for many years. She devoted lots of time to get text and pix online. Along the way I found out that we had a hometown in common. Donna grew up in Tyler, Texas, just like me.
100 First Cool Sites. Musea's Guide to the Internet. #81. This double issue included my Internet Bill of Rights. The first right listed was, The Right to Access the Net. Strange to look at this old issue and see how the internet has changed. Some of the sites listed in the guide remain, many are long gone. Google wasn't even born then!
By this time I had my first e-mail address, email@example.com .
Detour. Remember the rumor circulating then that the government was just about to tax all e-mails? That threat was always just around the corner!
Email Club. By 2000 I had started an online Musea Email Club. These were weekly articles sent to readers on my mailing list. Over the years I've written 750+ of these.
Art Quizzes. The Art Quiz went online. There have been 840 so far.
The Supremes. Musea #58, Aug. 97, reported a key ruling by the Supreme Court that many missed. This would be a major development in the internet.
In a 7-2 ruling the Supreme Court last month said that the internet will enjoy the freedom guaranteed to printed matter and will NOT be regulated with content restrictions like radio and TV. Here is a line from the Courts decree, (Where) any person can become a town crier ... (OR) pamphleteer.
Philippine Readers. I have a lot of online readers from the Philippines! But they all link to only one page, my poem version of a story by Lu Hsun, titled A Little Incident (Story in Verse). Each week when I scan my stats, I see one or two visits on this poem by people from the Philippines. I have no idea where they hear about it, but I welcome them all. Here is the beginning of that poem.
Six years have gone by as so many winks of an eye
since I came to the capital from my provincial village.
During that time there have many times occurred
those celebrated events known as “Affairs of State,”
a great number of which I was privy to.
Yet my heart seems not to be affected by them,
and recollecting them only increases my ill temper,
and causes me to like people less and less
as the day wears out.
But one little incident is deep with meaning.
And to this day I am unable to forget it...
Matthew Creed. Matthew was my second webmaster, and my current one. He seems to always bring me luck. When he was one of the managers at the Inwood Theater he got my photo of playing in the box office on the cover of one of the Landmark Chain of Theaters, promotional CDs. He also got them to add one of my songs, Stories to the lineup of tunes. So for what it is worth, I've been on a record with Nick Cave as well as 10 other musicians/groups from across the country.
Later Matthew became my second Musea webmaster. He has also set up my music website, hunkasuarus.com. And finally he has taken my art and turned it into covers for all of my six streaming books.
Facebook. Online is changing everything. If there is the art revolution that I've championed, it'll be mostly caused by the changes from the internet. Facebook is a good place to start. I have over 200 friends - who are these people? Most I don't know, many I've grown to know and like well.
Besides those mentioned elsewhere, I'll add Joe Underwood, and Frank D. Walsh. Both have been very supportive of my work.
Seems that certain people are like islands in the Facebook sea. They have a massive amount of friends who monitor their many posts. Besides the many people I've already mentioned, here are some favorite Facebook islands.
Mary Mayo. Great upbeat and stylish posts from this Brooklyn woman.
Kevin McClosky. Entertaining posts full of fun.
Paul San Luis. Busy musician with stylish update photos and a back to basics sound.
Will Dockery. Raspy voiced singer, songwriter, music advocate, and poet from Georgia.
Five Celebrities on Facebook. There are also some celebrities that have gotten a second career online with their many popular Facebook posts. Certain personal favorites are Larry Storch from F-Troop, George Takei from Star Trek, Lynda Carter from Wonder Woman, Dawn Wells from Gilligan's Island, and Jimmy Webb, composer/musician/performer.
Brand New Celebrities from the Net. The internet has allowed new talent to start up all over the world without any middlemen blocking them. Here are some fine talents that are part of this new wave. History tells us that with any new entertainment route there will be new stars evolving with it. Look at all the new stars in the first days of film. Also note all the new stars in the first days of TV. Here is my suggestion for some new stars to watch in the first days of the internet.
Natalie Tran. This Australian has a youtube video series called Community Channel. She is wonderful at light, self deprecating, fun; as she looks at all the minor nuisances that plague her life.
Sara Niemietz and W. G. Snuffy Walden. This singer and guitarist are both very talented in their own right. She is an all around singer of all kinds of songs, and he is a guitarist, and soundtrack composer. My favorite work of both are when they work together as a duo. One reason I enjoy listening to them is because their back to basics music, is the closest thing to what I'm doing, as Hunkasaurus and His Pet Dog Guitar. In both cases there is one voice and one standard guitar.
The Young Turks. TYT began as an online political commentary series created by Cenk (pronounced Jenk) Uygur, Ben Mankiewicz, and Dave Koller. They have expanded to all types of news. They are the biggest online news web series that is not affiliated with any major media company. Cenk shows real political insight, and is always fascinating to listen to. Watch also for a personal favorite, Ana Kasparian, a smart and lovely co-host with a passionate and magnetic personality.
Musea has also used the net to support the art revolution - FOR the best of indies and AGAINST the abuses of corporate media. Here are some of my major online projects.
Five Doors to the Art Revolution. Musea issue #162 talked about Five Doors to the Art Revolution: Door 1. Music, 2. Art, 3. Literature, 4. Fair and Open Review Service for All, 5. Art Centers for Everyone. Later I made a six video youtube series illustrating the five doors. The extra video was an intro to the series.
73 Videos on Youtube. #165. This Musea issue listed my first 50 youtube videos and what they were about.
150 More Videos on Youtube. The music company CDBaby also posted 150 youtube videos of mine with one for every song of my 9 CD set. Each shows the cover and plays the song. That is 223 videos total.
Art. Postism art. (See The Artists.)
The Big List - 100 Plus Favorite Music From the Internet and the World. Many years ago I began assembling favorite songs that I discovered on the internet. This list has grown to well over 200 musical recordings - that covers a lot of great musicians!
When I challenged the three company control of music, (see 3 CEO's) and their generic teen pop, some would respond by asking who I liked. I would point to my Big List of 200+. As far as I know it is, The first best music of the entire internet, list! Here is an excerpt from the post explaining the Big List.
Some selections are pure music, some are a fun mix of music and video, all IMO are VERY GREAT and better than what you hear as mainstream corporate music. I think about 90% of these would make #1 singles, and the rest would make some of the world’s greatest albums.
Note these are songs and compositions from all over the world. They include EVERY type of music. I looked for good songs that had melody and rhythm. I also looked for a variety of styles and anything that showed originality. And finally I looked for things that are in some way magical – that enticed me to hear the music over and over.
Hit Song Challenge (3 - 6 String of Hits Club). The period from about 1955-75 had many hit makers. This is a list of those that had 3-6 big hits. When I tell people about this list, I ask that they compare it to the number of hits made in music in the last 20 years. It's hard to find a good hit anymore. (Also see the online post, The Catch 22 of Rock and Roll or Why It Can't Get Better.)
3 CEO's. My Dallas music revolution is also against the three CEO's that run the entire music business. Warners, Universal, and Sony control 80%. These three men only support teen pop, only promote a few major stars, and haven't allowed music to change in 15 years. The music revolt is for the thousands of fine musicians trying something - anything new and creative and being blocked at every turn by an industry that has jumped the shark.
Virtually every talented musician out there has been reduced to selling t-shirts and a few CD's at half empty clubs. They have had their careers ruined by these three CEOs. We can't turn our backs to this anymore. If you love all types of music, you should support this music revolution.
For more on the 3 CEO's see The Music Problem, 3 Company Presidents Determine all Music? Here are two quotes from the article, plus a response to it from Marc Fort, from the Texas Music Office.
Q. You will never hear a protest song on mainstream radio. That means there is no revolt allowed in music. That's why the revolt in music.
Q Those reading this, if you know a great musician, I can predict that right now he's out of a career and making close to minimum wage no matter how good he is or how hard he works. Buying a CD or t-shirt won't help. Support him by opening up music again so great talent has a chance. Vote against the 3 CEO mess and for indie musicians.
Q. I love that line: "Time to change the music industry so it's built on talent and not publicity... Thanks for sharing this! Did you write it? It's really well done and thought out. I'm checking out the link to the TeXas Video Showdown now. " - Marc Fort, Texas Music Office.
TeXas Video Showdown. I wanted to post a protest video against corporate music. I did it in my video titled, TeXas Video Showdown, (Worst video ever made ... on purpose!) My Youtube video had no budget, no set, and no cameos from famous stars. I didn't even comb my hair! But what counts for me is that this cheap video challenges the most expensive videos on behalf of thousands of talented indie musicians that can't afford to make costly videos. Dumping music videos will help every talented musician get a fair chance. People should listen with their ears, not their eyes.
History of Rock And Roll (part one and two). Just for fun check out this Lost Tape, my recitation of the history of rock and roll, over a beatnik style guitar. See how many rock stars that are mentioned in the lyrics, that you know.
Chapter Twenty: ADVOCATING FOR EVERYONE.
Q. It's my Soirree and I'll Ennui if I want to.
Q. Corporate art is a real influenza in my life. It bugs me!
Q. Don't look at me in that tone of voice!
Q. We have met the enemy and it is not us!
Q. A mind is a terrible thing to fill with waste.
Q. Musea to Corporate Art ... taking the wind out of your sales!
Q. A race against slime!
Q. It's better to be a good businessman then to give the customers the business.
Q. Well, if you appreciate my business, why am I on hold?
Q If you don't take a stand, you take a fall.
Q. Musea, another rectangular circular;
Q. Serving all your art revolutionary needs since 1992.
This section talks about people, but not one at a time. It talks about them in the collective; small groups, big groups; thousands, millions. Here is where Musea advocated for everyone and against those in power standing in their way.
The BIG Question. First the obvious question I had about all the arts and media. Why was bad art celebrated and good art not? Why was the art world upside down?
Before I started Musea, my music career was going nowhere; but, I thought that could just be me. Maybe that was my fault. Then I looked around. All the other talented people that I knew were in the same boat, the same sailing ship, on the same windless sea. What was going on? Why was the art world upside down?
Many would respond to me by saying that there was great art out there, you just have to search it out. My reaction was this. Why? Why shouldn't the best art be celebrated instead of marginalized? Why did I have to search for talent? Wasn't that the job of art and media corporations? Throughout all of the world's history, up until a few decades ago, art companies and media succeeded because they made it their job to find the best talent - the best writers, critics, musicians, artists, actors, dancers, photographers, etc. Why did that stop? And why did today's media go along with this mess? Why did corporations stop searching for and supporting great art? And why did the media celebrate bad art and marginalize great art? Why was the art world upside down?
Ben Bagdikian. The author of the Media Monopoly, first released in 1983, helped me to sort this all out. He saw a consolidation of the media into fewer and fewer hands. In the first of six editions of this groundbreaking book, Bagdikian saw that the US media had been reduced from thousands of individual outlets to 50, and he gave the reasons why that was so dangerous to our country. Since then it has gotten closer to 10 mega corporations with some claiming it's now down to six, The Big Six.
I saw that his arguments for the media, worked for the arts too, and that these same huge media conglomerates also made the arts, distributed them, and even publicized and reviewed them in the media they owned! I said to myself, Time for a revolution in the arts.
Through Musea I began to advocate for better arts, more fun arts, less greedy arts, and for a celebration of the best in the arts. From issue #1 this was a topic that took center stage again and again. It seemed to be the main problem that caused all the others.
Soon this advocacy for better arts led to other suggested changes. Here are some of the Musea issues not yet mentioned, and the people involved.
Musea #1. The first issue, in an interview with Art S Revolutionary, spelled out what was wrong, and what could fix it. Neither the problem or the solution have changed since. The question the interviewer asked was, How can you fix this mess in the arts.
By opposing the Hollywood monopolies who have destroyed American art and culture through excessive commercialism and the blocking of all fair competition from independent artists; and by giving a forum for real art, a forum without advertising, government grants, or corporate sponsors.
Our Next 2 Steps in the Art Revolution. #27. They were, 1. a Catalogue of Indie Products, and 2. a Directory of Independents. Sadly both proved outside my capability. I was able to mention only a very small percentage of the best of indie artists and their works. This issue listed many that I knew of; but it just scratched the surface.
Orders for Art Revolutionaries. #28. They included: #1, Ask for your money back on bad art, #3, Buy used, and #6, Get out and explore.
The Revolution in Arts Technology or How I'll Win the War Daddy. #30. The internet changes everything, and arts is a big part of that. The web has the potential of allowing artists to reach art lovers directly without corporate middlemen.
The Artists Against Corporate Art Logo. #31. The Little Emblem That Could. I devised an emblem or logo that I encouraged all indies to add to their work. Many did, and they were a brave lot for doing so. I told Brian Zero, a columnist at MaximumRocknRoll my idea, and this was his response.
After I wrote my last article for MRR, I received a great variety of intelligent responses from various people. One individual by the name of Tom Hendricks, who produces a magazine titled Musea (a zine examining the media), came up with what I feel to be a wonderful idea; the production of a symbol that can be stamped or stuck as a sticker onto what is produced as an alternative media product. This symbol would indicate that whatever product it is, it was manufactured against the grain of the corporate nation that surrounds us.
Third Anniversary Issue. #37. This issue offered a two page catalogue of indie books and assorted other things that I thought would interest readers. Though not much came from it then, it still is a valid idea for the future. And if anyone out there has all the zines, chapbooks, and other things offered in the catalogue, they have a treasure trove of zine collectibles!
The Cheesecake Issue (with pinups galore.) #38. The front page featured this comparison of zines, Pro and Con.
Con: Narrow in focus, and often amateurish (the work of typewriter, stapler, and copying machine), zines are at the bottom of the publishing food chain. Geared mostly toward the disaffected young, they are the poor man's version of vanity press book-publishing. In tone and style, they are a bit like online chat rooms - vulgar, weird, decidedly idiosyncratic, and usually the work of a single offbeat mind. - Zines of the Times, Wall Street Journal, 9/1/95.
Pro: Martin Luther nailed a zine to a door and look what happened. - Art S
Advertisers Guidelines for TV Shows. #39. This lead article tackled the problems of ads. Musea hates ads, and never wants any ads for kids. Here's why.
1. They set up a fake need, desire, or fear in the customer.
2. They are for being selfish and against sharing.
3. They paint corporations as always being right.
Q. If repeated messages of violence on TV don't have an impact, why are advertisers spending billions on ads to get their message repeatedly heard?
Q. Target audience means someone's aiming at you!
Q. Musea on commercials: "Ad Nauseum!"
Artists Evaluation and Support Agency. #43 and #109. Musea suggested a for profit review service that gives all artists a fair review for a reasonable processing fee without corporate ads or sponsors. This would not only give indies a much needed review, but it would put them on the same level as any giant corporate artist who would also have to submit their work for review for the same processing fee.
Getting reviews for artists is a constant theme in Musea, because no artist of any kind can have a career without them. This type of review site would give an unbiased analysis of submitted work. It could also offer constructive advice, practical ways to promote one's work, basic info on common sense protection for artists, and hard facts about the pitfalls of careers in the arts.
I tried to do this, but after a few reviews, it was clear that it was beyond the ability of one person. For this to work, it has to have some financial backing to set it up, organizers to run it, and the help of many reviewers.
I would also suggest that if this site becomes a reality that it purchase when applicable, those fair reviews that have already been done by other reviewers. That way this single online site could be the go to place for fair reviews on all aspects of the arts. Slogan for the site: Where You Can Audition for the World!
Who IS Corporate Art? #50. This 50th issue named names. By 1996 there were 11 main art-media conglomerates, and 13 more media conglomerates who owned most of the newspapers in the US. This article also included The National Entertainment State, a chart from The Nation magazine showing the six major companies, what they owned, and how connected they all were.
Musead. #52, #69 #71, #144, #150, and #170. Musea issue #52 was the first to advocate for an all arts center called Musead. Musead is one big idea that has gone through many versions. It can either be the size of an ocean liner, or in a Plan B, it can be a shop having three rooms. No matter the end version, this continues to be another major goal for me.
A Starving Artist Stands on his Soapbox to Take a Look At Capitalism. #58. The issue's lead article suggested some fixes for the worst aspects of capitalism starting with solution #1, Enforce the laws against monopolies.
Ridicule Me This. #59. Time/Warner sued Denton rock band Riddle Me This for rights infringement, because the Warner's character Batman has a foe named the Riddler. So Hunkasaurus wrote Warners asking this lawyer question,
"... I am a musician in the duo Hunkasaurus & His Pet Dog Guitar. We want to change our name to "Warner Bros Suck." Is that in anyway an infringement on your trademarks or copyrights? Please advise.
I then printed their Stepford Wife, lawyer response.
As you appear to have anticipated in your letter, use of the name "Warner Bros." as part of the name of your musical group, would indeed violate a number of rights belonging to Warner Bros., including its trademark rights.
Accordingly we cannot give you permission to use the "Warner Bros." name in connection with the name of your musical group. Best of luck with your future business activities.
Very truly yours,
Nils Victor Montan/ Vice President/ Senior Intellectual Property Counsel/ Corporate Legal. / cc. John Schulman.
The Art of Business in the Art Business. #62. The lead story looked at how to improve business for everyone. It started with the ideas of Dr. William Edwards Deming, an American professor who was very influential on Japanese Businessmen in the 80's. Then Musea added some ideas of our own.
The ruler has
the right to rule
as long as he rules
Front Page Notice from Musea #63. This annual movie issue of Musea was printed in black and white. Future generations may not colorize it. Permission denied!
Corporate Art Update - And then there were 9. #83. With the '99 Viacom/CBS merger, corporate art/media shrunk from 10 to 9.
The British Dialogues or The 2nd Revolutionary War. #89. I posted my art revolutionary ideas on many newsgroups. One that brought quite a conservative reaction was uk.music.alternative. There the debate heated up - to put it mildly. This issue reprinted some of the lively excerpts from those back and forth posts.
The Art Revolution Versus Corporate Art and Media. #96. This sum up article was first printed in the zine, Sex Death and Ronald McDonald, vol. #3. The editor Vermicious Knid, had requested that I write an article summing up the art revolution. I did and after sending him a copy, I reprinted it in Musea.
This article is worth a look to give any neophyte the information he needs on what the art and media revolution is about. Here is the first line.
Q. There are two things that are notable about all the arts today ... they're lousy, and the media says they're great...
Clear Channel. #102. This article was a list in very small print of column after column of all the radio stations one corporation, Clear Channel owned. The caption read, Clear Channel owns too much and here are the reasons why I feel that way.
Clear Channel has changed its name. It is now known as, I , then a picture of a heart, then the word radio. My guess is this means, I HURT Radio.
One for Our Side. #136. This collection of Musea E-mail Club messages contained one about a check I received from Greg Abbot, then Attorney General of Texas, for $13.88 on 2/23/04. This was a class action suit against the major record companies and many record outlets for price fixing. The companies paid off. Here are the highlights from the accompanying letter.
Dear Texas Music Purchaser ... I am pleased to enclose payment for your claim in the settlement of the Compact disc Minimum Advertised Price Antitrust Litigation. This lawsuit was brought by the Attorneys General of 43 states and 3 territories ...It is a pleasure to bring this matter to a satisfactory conclusion and to return value to consumers who purchased CD's while the challenged pricing policies were in effect."
Five Doors. #162. This important issue summed up the ideas of the art revolution in five doors. (See above.)
New Things Issue. #165, This medley issue contained these articles, The World's First Culture - For the First Time the World is Sharing a Culture! , and The Art Olympics, ideas for an art olympics for the world.
The Big Ideas Issue. #176. This issue brought back a lot of my main ideas in all aspects of the arts, media, art revolution, biology ideas, education and government reforms, and more.
Dictionary of Small Ideas. #184. While issue #176 above covered the main big issues in Musea, this issue covered the smaller ones. And it did it in dictionary form, letter by letter, A to Z. Each entry was defined in a few sentences. Examples:
New Paradigm. The paradigm is shifting from conservative versus liberal to corporations versus democracy. Both corporations and people are fighting for control of the government. Lately the corporations have won most battles.
People Power. Turn a water wheel sideways and you have a turnstile or revolving door. Hook it up to a generator and you have safe, clean, and green, people power - even in a power outage.
Triangle Texas Bullet Train. This train goes non-stop from D/FW to Austin/San Antonio, to Houston, and back to D/FW. Takes about 2 hours between any two cities and 6-8 hours for the entire trip.
Quatros. A form of poetry that I invented that's even more concise than haiku. In a quatro a poet tells his message in four words or four short phrases. Often the poet compares the first two words of the poem with the second two. Example,
Stand Ups. Art works that are pasted to a flat blank sheet of card stock that's then folded on both ends to allow the art to stand on it's own. This is a new way to easily display art on a table, or shelf. It is art that has escaped the walls!
Wiki-College. Free online college courses for everyone in the world. Those wanting course credit pay a fee to take a final exam from the professor who taught he course.
Neighborhood Buses. Why go downtown to cross the street? Have some neighborhood buses that circulate only in that community.
Some Assorted Other Protests in Musea or Online.
Pay for Play or What if the Net is a Jukebox? Here is the problem - how can artists make money on their work posted online? My solution is simple - make online sites a jukebox!
Set up an online pay for play service where clicking on a webpage pays a penny or so. This payment allows anyone to access the work of an artist, musician, writer, filmmaker, architect, dancer, photographer, journalist, etc. The artist gets fair compensation, the customer pays pennies, and quality counts.
This simple step eliminates the entire layer of corporate middlemen in the arts! It gets rid of all advertising. It allows any artist of any kind to get compensation for good work. And in the case of online media, it allows independent news media to run articles free of sponsors.
What is needed to make this work is an online way to collect and bill for very small amounts of money. Musea has some low tech ideas on how to do this. I bet other tech people could come up with many options too.
Boycott Every 4th Ad in a Row. Three is enough. Don't buy anything advertised in the fourth ad in a row. This protest would limit ads on TV, in magazines, on radio, online, etc. to no more than three in a row. That is plenty.
Enough Rope Interviewing Technique. Sometimes agreeing with someone's outrageous opinion pushes the interviewee to carry his view too far, or to back track and go the other way from what he said before. People are prepared for the adversary questions, but not for those that agree too much.
Mass Marketing of Paintings. This allows the artist to keep his original work and receive royalties on copies sold. We sell black and white prints now. Let's add color prints. Let's add the mass marketing of paintings and drawings to the mass production of books, music, and film. Some purists resist this, but I am an artist, and I love the idea of sharing my work this way.
The technology can replicate most paintings on canvas as good as the original. Note too that most classic art is not on display but in storage in museums. By mass marketing the works in the basement, the museums would get a chance to make money selling copies, and art lovers would get a chance to see all these hidden works. Now imagine a tour coming to your town of copies of every painting by Da Vinci, Renoir, or Van Gogh!
Theater Protest. While Hollywood walks the red carpet, theater workers are swept under it. They are paid the lowest wages and benefits allowed by law. Hollywood no longer owns theaters, that trust was busted; but they still control them, and they, not theater owners could get fair wages if they spoke out. Right now, Hollywood is no better than fast food or Walmart.
National Worker's Union. Why not a national union built on the AARP advocate group for seniors? That way every worker is signed up, and every worker is represented.
Ten Steps to Help the Country. Many of the main problems of the country have reasonable solutions when you are open to new ideas. Here are 10 solutions that I suggest might resolve a lot of the countries problems in a fair, non divisive, non political, way. They support all and hurt none. They include, National Hiring Day to get thousands jobs in one day and help fill the 5 million open positions now, Wiki-College to get a low cost option for college, Community Bank Accounts to end poverty without spending a dime, etc. Dividing the nation into two opposing camps insures that everyone is miserable and nothing gets done. Read more here.
PAGE OF RECOMMENDATIONS.
The years of advocating for more quality in the arts and more fairness for all, has led to certain recurring Best Ideas.
First we should by law end the conglomeration of the arts and media into so few corporate hands. Then we need to build support for independent artists and media.
to: CORPORATE ART AND MEDIA CONGLOMERATES.
The law should be clear. You can:
1. Make the art
2. Distribute the art.
3. Publicize and review the art on your entertainment and media outlets.
BUT YOU CAN'T DO ALL THREE!
to: INDEPENDENT ARTISTS AND MEDIA.
We should build and support the following.
1. Reviews for all. Fair, guaranteed no-ad, online, reviews for a processing fee, that allows any artist in any type of art to compete on quality.
2. Pay for Play. Set up an online pay for play service where clicking on a webpage pays a penny or so to access the work of the artist, musician, writer, filmmaker, architect, dancer, photographer, journalist, etc. This simple step eliminates the entire layer of corporate middlemen, allows any artist of any kind to get compensation, and allows independent media to be free of any ads or sponsors.
3. Major Art Centers. Cities, art agencies, the national government, and/or private citizens should promote art centers open to all arts and all the people.
Index. The MUSEA VAULTS.
Finally in our 200+ people celebration of our 200th issue of Musea, I would like to look into the vaults to see if we missed anybody, or anything.
AND let me apologize ahead of time to anyone that I still missed and should have mentioned.
Put your name here _____________________ .
THANKS to all of you. It's been a wild ride!
MY BOOKS STREAMING ONLINE. (At all major net outlets.)
LIBRARY PLANET: Within these pages you'll find a sci-fi adventure, a gothic tale of suspense, a mystery, a quest, a romance, and a 1,000 libraries to house them in - a story so vast it requires a Library Planet! $1.99
CENDRILLON : Cendrillon is the true story of Cinderella. A packet of letters is found from a historic Germanic Queen that supports all the details of the Cinderella fairy tale. There is also included a real photograph of Cendrillon on the cover, based on a print portrait made at the time. $1.99
PORTRAITS : This is a novel about art, artists, and the art revolution. Nine artists come together in an art co-op that may just change the entire art world. Along the way there is also the love story of Jack and Francesca, and Jack's secret admirer, Missy U. $1.99.
TEN SHORT AND SHORT-SHORT PLAYS: Includes five short plays: The Wandering Student, William Tell, Medusa, Daedalus, and Swanella and the Doll; plus five short-short plays: Manikin & Minikin, Red, The Interrogation, Larry's Sugar Pills, and Job. $1.99.
DOWNTOWN WITH THE BOOK OF RENOWN or "?". Two boys have one big adventure, when Bradley finds a treasure map and two keys in a memo book from the hand of a dead gangster. He names it the Book of Renown. The map in the Book of Renown leads him and his friend, Tom, downtown to… Teen mystery novel. $1.99
WRITINGS IN SCIENCE, A History of the Future. Sci-fi novel in stories, essays, poems, and plays. See back pages for first reviews and more coverage. $5.99.
BOOKS PUBLISHED BY MUSEA.
Art Revolutionary Handbook. Manifesto for a peaceful art revolution.
Best of Musea, The First Fifty Issues.
Invaders. Sci-fi novel in verse.
Rating the 60's Concerts. By Woody Stock.
Moon Tea. Anthology of children’s poetry and stories.
The Renascent Workbook. 1976 Booklet on first bio ideas.
All About Nothing. Collection of essays by G.K.H. Bryant.
The Philosopher. Fable by G.K.H. Bryant.
Portraits. A novel about art, artists, and the art revolution.
The Sayings of Editor Art. Collected sayings.
100 Pieces of the Moon. Collection of poems and stories on the Moon.
Art Exhibit in Book Form. Collection of assorted black and white drawings by me.
Moon Observatory. Sci-fi story in verse.
Celebration of Poetry. Essay on all types of poetry. Prose speaks. Poetry SINGS!
Library Planet. Sci-fi novel.
Downtown With The Book of Renown. Teen mystery novel.
I Don't Dumb Down, So Please Wise Up. Art quiz questions, ed. by Erik Peterson.
Musea #200, The People Issue. This issue here.
MUSIC RELEASED BY HUNKASAURUS AND HIS PET DOG GUITAR.
HUNKASAURUS and HIS PET DOG GUITAR, Outside The Box, Tin Set.
Contains 150 SONGS from 9 individually released CDs. $100.
For 10 years I've worked on this 9 CD, 150 song, collection of half originals and half covers. It's all types of music, that reflect my song list of voice and standard guitar playing, that was developed during 19 years of box office concerts. $9.99 per CD.
Here are the 9 CD's: 30, Next, Third, Four -TH, 5 -TH, 6 -TH, 7 -TH, 8 -TH, 9 -TH.
Tom's Favorites From 12 By 12. Anthology cassette from the Co-op record co. featuring: D. Rennke, T. Baugh, S.J. Loehr, A. Mosteller, and many others.
Lost Tapes. ( Online only.) Assortment of early and rough recorded songs. Includes Hunkasaurus' first tape, assorted piano bagatelles, The History of Rock n Roll, etc.
ZINE Musea ......... http://www.Musea.us
MUSIC website, 9 CD's ......... http://www.Hunkasaurus.com
BLOG for Musea, Art Contests, E-mail Club .......... http://www.Musea.wordpress.com.
YOUTUBE. My 73 videos ........ http://www.youtube.com/TomHendricksMusea.
YOUTUBE. 150 videos posted by CD Baby .... search, CD Baby + Hunkasaurus.
ZINE HALL OF FAME, .... http://zinewiki.com/Category:Musea_Zine_Hall_of_Fame.
The BIG LIST, 100 Plus Favorite Music from the Internet ..... http://wp.me/p5S9X-36.
Also see, Wikipedia page, CDBaby page, Amazon Books page, etc.
Artists Against Corporate Art T- Shirts.
AACA Stickers. For all artists to add to their indie work.
Musea Catalogue. No longer available.
Musea Review Service. Now on hold.
Players a Game of Twelves. Rule book and board game.
Musea Reading Fund. Now available at Lucky Dog Bookstores, Dallas.
Musea Envelopes. Write and request a free one.
Musea Four Sided Cards. Art greeting cards.
Musea Standups. Art that has escaped the wall.
Musea Gargoyle. To protect my readers.
Five Doors to the Art Revolution, Video Series on Youtube.
Zine Hall of Fame. Celebrating zines and zinesters.
Five Big Goals. Revolution in the Arts, Hendricks Health Theory, Community Bank Accounts, Educational Reforms, and Media Reforms.
Ten Best Poets of All Time.
100 Best Novels of All Time
100 First Cool Websites - Musea's Guide to the Internet.
Musea's Guide to the Best Movies of All Time. Year by year, 1897-2000. Three Issues.
Guide to Best TV Comedies. Year by year.
Best Artists. Includes, Best - Children's Illustrators, Portrait painters, Abstract painters.
Adventures in Reading. Guide to some fun assorted books. Two issues.
Big List. 100 Plus Favorite Music from The Internet and the World. Online Only.
SPECIAL ISSUES OF MUSEA.
#1. First Issue. Collector's Item.
#3. Lead Story, Rock is Over Wow Is Here. WOW = World Open Wide music.
#20. Lead Story, 2000 A.D. Dallas Becomes Art Center to the World.
#23. Musea Gets 12 By 12 Records For a Song.
#29. Invaders. Begins a seven part serialized sci-fi novel in verse.
#33. Rating the 60's Concerts. Begins a five part serialized book on concerts I saw.
#40. Special Newspaper Issue.
#42. Essay on English Spelling Reforms.