review of stan ridgway live show, 1990/4/23

Copyright 1991-1997 by Larry Hastings. Free to redistribute, provided it is redistributed intact including this copyright notice.

Okay, I admit it.  I am a GIANT Stan Ridgway fan.  I went to his show at
the Oasis (in San Jose, CA) on Monday night (4/23/90).  Since he was hanging
out at the back of the club (on the second floor) before the show, I went and
got his autograph, and asked if he was going to play "Newspapers" that
evening... which got a smile out of his bass payer, and Stan said "You know,
you're the _first_ person to ever say that..."

Anyway, I am such an ingrained geek that I took _notes_ during the show (mainly
so that I could keep a list of the songs he played, and so I could put his
better quotes into my fortune database, Lfortune).  Here are the bulk of my
notes, mixed in with the song list:

SONG LIST -- songs played by Stan Ridgway at the Oasis in San Jose, CA, 4/25/90
(songs marked with a * are new songs)

*Future Bound (monologue)
	This "song" was actually an 8 or 10 minute monologue Stan read from a
	piece of paper, while the musicians played "technological" sounds in
	the background (lots of beeps and sliding tones from the synthesizers,
	assymetrical unmetered weird drumming, and long super-overdriven
	super-fuzzed chords from the bass player).  It was mostly about
	Stan's concern for how we are hurtling into the future without paying
	much attention, and featured quotes like:
	"We are in a shotgun marraige with technology"
	"The real world is not like the Nightly News, and the real world
	 was never 'Leave It To Beaver' or 'Rosanne' or 'Green Acres' or
	 'The Beverly Hillbillies'..."
*Talk Hard
	This was passible -- pretty repeative...
The Big Heat
*Jack Talked
	The bulk of this song was the chorus, which went:
	 1    2       3       4
	"Jack talked  (thump) (thump)
	 Jack talked, why     (thump)
	 Jack talked  like a  man
	 on   fire"
	repeated four times, followed by "man on fireeeeeee...."
	There were some other lyrics about how Jack sang his heart out
	and told all, but for the most part of the evening Stan wasn't audible
	enough to make out the words (unless you already knew them) so I
	wasn't able to figure out much of this.
Last Honest Man
	Like last time he played, he changed the second stanza (about 
	"the man who moves the masses") to the following (or something
	pretty close):
	"There's a man who spins the records
	 In a big city place like here
	 It broadcasts to three whole states
	 And they say he has an ear

	 But he never seems to listen
	 And he never taps his toes
	 (line missing)
	 He listens with his nose"
*Come To Sleep
	Stan introduced this song as being "about a nightmare... something
	for all you Jung fans" (or something like that).  This song was
	I noticed that the bulk of this song was carried by the sequencer.
	Ah, but for days gone by, when stage musicians played their own

	There was an extra little bit right at the end of the song, which went:
	"I'm sick and tired
	 Of this rotten job --
	 And I'm sick and tired
	 Of all these barbecues and eatin' corn-on-the-cob"
	He seems to love doing this live -- he played this last time I saw him
	(in late August of last year, I think).
Big Talk (Longarm)
	This was labeled "Big Talk" on the songlists that were on the
	stage.  Draw your own conclusion.
Mexican Radio
	A perfunctory performance... no little radio to give his voice that
	tinny sound, no particular interest... after he was finished, he called
	it "A fun little song... sure, it's stupid, but it's fun, isn't it?"
*Uba's House Of Fashions
	This song is about a place that's supposedly on Sunset Boulevard in
	Hollywood, "where we get dressed".  Stan said the song was "obscure,
	maybe, but fun for us to play", and I get the impression that he
	probably won't put it on any albums.  However, it _was_ a fun song.
	(The chorus went:
	  Fashions... Fashions....")
*I Wanna Be A Boss
	Or, at least, I _think_ that's the title of this song.  It was mainly
	about how some poor slob wants his boss's job, because his boss doesn't
	do anything, and has three secretaries, and he wants a limo, and a
	yacht, and so on.  It was alright.
Goin' Southbound
Drive, She Said
	which went into
*Beyond Tomorrow (closing monologue)
	More of the same of the opening monologue, warning us about technology
	and asking us to make a happier world to live in:
	"Wouldn't it be nice to live in a world where you could go up to your
	 next-door neighbor and say 'Hi there' and they didn't pull a knife
	 on you?  I've got knives too... but I don't pull 'em."
	"So, right now, I want you to turn to the person next to you, and get
	 up close to 'em, and look right in their eye, and say:

	I get the idea that this may be on the next album... Stan signed
	his name "Beyond Tomorrow!  Stan Ridgway"

At this point, Stan and company left the stage, so that we could call them out
for an encore.  What a wild, wacky, spur-of-the-moment thing.

*Katie, Is That You
	I'm not sure if that's the right name or not.  This is a song
	originally by Chuck Berry.  The chorus asked "Katie, is that you" and
	finished up with "What are you doing?"... Stan ended the last chorus
	with "Just what the god-damn hell are you DOING, _anyway_?"
*Beyond Tomorrow, continued (closing monologue)
	This went on for another minute or two.

Then, Stan and company left the stage, and they turned the house music back

Players: Stan Ridgway (vocals, harmonica -- no guitar all evening)
	 M.J. 12: (the new name for his back-up band... the name was Harry
	 	   Truman's "Majestic Twelve", and Stan said 'look it up')
		Pietra Wexstun: keyboards
		Joe Ramirez: bass
		Joe Berardi: drums
		Mark Schultz: guitar
		Bernard Hall: keyboards

Also... during one of the songs, someone handed him a "Wooly Willy" -- one
of those toys with a little picture of a face and some iron filings under
plastic, where you rearrainge the filings with a magnet and draw moustaches,
hair, etc.  Between two of the songs, he brought it out, and started talking
about it:
	"And, you know, when you give a gift, it's always nice to take off
	 the price tag... you see here, this 'Wooly Willy' cost a dollar
	 and thirty-nine cents.  I'll black it out, here, but I'll remember
	 that price for the next twenty years..."
	"This is an important memento in the Ridgway family.  One night in
	 San Jose, a nameless person gave me a worthless toy... and it
	 touched me in a way I could not quite articulate."

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Review of Stan Ridgway live show, 1990/4/23 / Larry Hastings /