Monday, November 30, 2009
Here are a couple more selections from the stack of illustrations I did a few months back for Flying Saucer Rock'N'Roll, the forthcoming compilation volume of wild interviews with undeservedly little-known rockers from the pages of Roctober magazine (see Billy Lee Riley post way down below for another taste from the same combination plate). First up is Sam The Sham, one of my all-time fave rockers with deep Tex-Mex musical roots and the all-important sense of style that made early rock'n'roll so great. Also on tap today is my drawing of The Good Rats, who have an interesting '70s rock story even though their music is mostly not to my taste. I'll post more of these soon, hopefully with some updated info about when the book will be hitting the street. Stay tuned for MORE ACTION!
Sunday, November 29, 2009
Saturday, November 28, 2009
I drew this one last year for the debut 45 of this jangly '60s garage outfit from Portland, Oregon. My buddy Periklis ished this hot wax on his cool Lost In Tyme label over in Greece and word is that he's workin' on a full length LP by The Garage Gods even as we speak. I'm lookin' forward to hearing it. These guys have found their own sound within the parameters of the mid-'60s garage style; good songs and distinctive vocals in a sorta Arthur Lee-ish style make 'em stand out from the crowd. The cover art was inspired by all one zillion Flintstones reruns I sat through in my impressionable youth. More stuff comin' soon. Stay tuned for MORE ACTION!
Friday, November 27, 2009
Okay, I know I posted the artwork for the new Rowdymen CD back in the early daze of this blog, but inasmuch as I did some last minute revisions on the image before handing in the final version, and then used that new and improved version to put together this snazzy poster for the CD release party, maybe you all will be so kind as to excuse any redundancy. Looks like this will be a fun show, with local all-girl teen powerpoppers The Paps opening the festivities. Stay tuned for MORE HI-OCTANE ACTION!
Thursday, November 26, 2009
Wednesday, November 25, 2009
This image was originally drawn for French garagesters The Sidewalk Stroll back in 1995 and was used on the cover of their debut LP Monobooster. There were a couple of little things I didn't like about the drawing in its original form so when Sal from Electric Frankenstein asked me to do a couple of quick posters for EF shows in Alberta I decided it would be a good opportunity to make a definitive revised version of this piece. This is one of a handful of drawings I made in the mid-'90s using DuoShade paper, specially treated art paper with 2 hidden patterns of shading that can be made visible by painting on a chemical solution. This technique was widely used by comic book artists in the '50s and '60s, especially in the Warren horror comics and all those hot rod comic mags like CarToons, so it seemed to add a fitting retro touch to an image like this. I'll post up the companion poster for EF's Calgary show tomorrow. Stay tuned for MORE ACTION!
Tuesday, November 24, 2009
(Continued from yesterday's post...) So I sent all the artwork for the Horace Pinker/NRA split 7" over to France. A couple of days later I get a phone call from FedEx asking me what they should do with my package. It seems that when they took it to Philippe's address there was no building, just a big hole in the ground. I had mailed stuff to that address before so this news was rather baffling. Later that week I got the whole story behind this Twilight-Zoneish turn of events. A leaking gas line had exploded and demolished the whole building the same day that I sent the package out. Philippe survived the conflagration but it seemed to spell the end of Erase-Yer-Head Records and the 7" never came out. Even more annoyingly, all the artwork disappeared under mysterious circumstances, which is why you won't be seeing the 2 paintings I made for this project here in the Rubber Room. Luckily I had the foresight to make photocopies of the black and white drawings before sending them out, so herewith they are presented to the omnivorous eye of the panting public (that's you, buddy!) for the first time ever. Stay tuned for MORE ACTION!
Monday, November 23, 2009
Back in the mid-'90s I did a few drawings for a French 'zine and record label entrepreneur named Philippe. He started out in the Garage Punk scene and switched over to hardcore and industrial noise after awhile. In that phase he had a label called Erase-Yer-Head Records which had kind of a neat concept. Their output was exclusively split 7"ers, each with a well known American or Japanese aggro-noise combo on one side and a less-known Euro band playing in a similar style on the flip. Each one came in a gatefold sleeve with full color artwork inside and out and an insert with 4 additional pages of black and white art by the same artist. All the artists for the noisy industrial style releases were contributors to Le Dernier Cri, a French avant garde comix magazine with a heavy Raw influence. I was asked to provide the art for a punk rock spinoff from the main series featuring pop punkers Horace Pinker from the USA and NRA from Holland, so I dutifully whipped up a couple of acrylic paintings and 4 B&W illustrations, two of which you may see atop this very stack of type. As this was an "art for art's sake" type of enterprise I let myself go a bit as far as the style and subject matter were concerned. I was pushing the deadline by the time I got everything done so I sent it over to France via FedEx. A couple days after sending it out I received the most baffling telephone call I've gotten yet in my career in the arts... More on that in tomorrow's post. Stay tuned for MORE ACTION!
Sunday, November 22, 2009
If you are wondering. most of the imagery on this blog comes from my subconscious mind in as unmitigated a form as possible. The point of art, I think, is to rummage around in one's own head until something of potential interest emerges, and then turn it loose in the world and wait to see what may result. From that perspective, my explanation of what this drawing is about would be no more worthy than yours, so I shall offer none. This piece was first used as a flyer for a show by local space rawkers The Breath Grenades. Later my friend Willem from Swamp-Room Records in Germany became enamored of this drawing and used it several times, including a colorized version that graced the cover of a split 7" by Mandra Gora Lightshow Society and Cherry Overdrive back in 2005. Here you may peruse it in it's original monochromatic incarnation. Stay tuned for MORE ACTION!
Saturday, November 21, 2009
From sunny Sydney, Australia, The Crusaders blared forth a fuzzy, Sonics-infused brand of frat party garage ravin' throughout the '90s and on into our present decade. I'm not sure if they are still playing or not, but a couple years ago I had the chance to do the sleeve design for this CD comp of some of their older material which came out on the hip Rastrillo Records label outta Buenos Aires. I made the front art as if it was an old animation cel, with a colored line drawing overlaid on an acrylic painting. On the back I was aiming for a '60s children's book kinda look with a bit of Hanna-Barbara styling thrown in for flavor. Crusaders' drummer Sir Mickster is currently running the cool Off The Hip label, serving up the loudest and wildest garage and powerpop action from Mad Max-land with a side order of foamy Foster's Lager. Stay tuned for MORE ACTION!
Friday, November 20, 2009
Made this one way back in 1994 for those reverb-happy extraterrestrials over at Romulan Records. I really dig these trashy comps of obscure old 45s and was stoked to get to do this sleeve for an LP crammed full of great early '60s surfin' instrumentals. Drawing a Horror Of Party Beach inspired surf monster was a natural here but due to mental impairment caused by many childhood hours of teevee rerun ogling in the early '70s I decided to throw in a Gilligan's Island tribute as well. I wish I had done a better job on some of the caricatures (particularly that of the great Jim Backus, whom I regard as one of the greatest geniuses ever to walk among us mere and most meager mortals) but overall I think this one holds up okay. More weird stuff comin' soon. Stay tuned for MORE SURFIN' SWINGIN' AND SURFIN' ACTION!
Thursday, November 19, 2009
The Bad Brains (prevented by some bizarre legal entanglement from using their own band name, hence "Soul Brains") played their most recent Winnipeg show back in 2001. They played a short set, quit just as things were starting to pick up steam and didn't play an encore. It was a pretty off-kilter evening. The poster is a tribute to John Agar's classic of cinema, The Brain From Planet Arous. Stay tuned for MORE ACTION!
Wednesday, November 18, 2009
Make Room! was another Estrusized late '90s garage punk 'zine, this one published by a guy named Forrest outta the great state of Texas. The idea for this ever-so-charming drawing came from a list of suggestions by the editor; I chose it as being most amenable to my then-thriving EC horror comic fetish fanaticism. My idea for a Make Room! cover had been a portrait of drunken rich people recklessly piloting a block-wide luxury vehicle through the slums, scattering ragged poor folks heedlessly before them. I suspect that such a concept was simply not gory enough to make the grade. This drawing features a special cameo appearance by my hard-rockin' ex-girlfriend Michelle in the role of "Third Startled Mourner From Left", so I shall dedicate this post to her with fond regards. Hey, kids! Stay tuned for MORE ACTION!
Tuesday, November 17, 2009
This'un was meant to be the sleeve for a split 7" by a combo called Subgoblins. They were some kind of spinoff from the eccentric garage rockin' Goblins from Chicago, not to be confused with Goblin from Italy, Thee Goblins from Canada or any other musical aggregation of Goblins that may be lurking in the cellars and pumpkin patches of our world. Subgoblins were supposed to cover the classic Lights Out by The Angry Samoans on their side of the 7"; I don't remember who or what was meant to inhabit the flipside. Anyhow the single never came out for whatever reason. I remember sending out lots of photocopies of this to all my pen pals at the time so it may have shown up in some fanzine somewhere but at this late date I really can't say for sure what or where. As the old saying goes, it only starts to get funny when somebody loses an eye. Ask Sammy Davis, Jr. if you don't believe me. Stay tuned for MORE DO THE EYE GOUGE, YOU TURKEYNECK ACTION!
Monday, November 16, 2009
Earlier this year local college radio station CKUW asked me to design a poster for one of the gigs they were putting on for their annual FunDrive fundraiser. I had sketched out this goofy gag drawing a couple years ago and thought it would work as a poster for the show which was headlined by Winnipeg HC legends The Unwanted. I crammed this thing with as many details as I could scrounge up in my mangled memory from going to punk shows in the early-to-mid '80s. Someone told me this was also used on some kinda CKUW program guide but I never saw a copy of that. Stay tuned for MORE ANARCHISTIC ACTION!
Sunday, November 15, 2009
Boyz Nex' Door were from Italy and played a cool mix of Killed By Death-style punk and trashy late'50s/early '60s r'n'r a la The A-Bones. They had a whole mess of limited edition 7"ers on various labels and this here CD on 1+2 Records outta Japan. I guess they broke up not long after this thing came out. There was some talk of a vinyl version coming out on a Spanish label but as far as I know nothing ever came of that. I think this was the last time I used the old style hand separated color technique. After this I was forced against my will to go high tech. Stay tuned for MORE ACTION!
Saturday, November 14, 2009
Norway's Yum Yums have been rulin' the Euro powerpop scene for 15 years now. This poster was made for an early German tour which if I am remembering rightly took place shortly before the release of their album debut Sweeter Than Candy. I was doing a lotta powerpop art around this time (a couple of CD designs I did for Bomp! Records seemed to put me in solidly with the European pop crowd) and as with most of the stuff I did in that vein this one has two big influences: the '60s Pop Art scene and the sort of graphics you'd see on candy and bubblegum packaging. The Yum Yums are still goin' strong so you should check out some of their many cool releases. More stuff coming soon. Stay tuned for MORE ACTION!
Friday, November 13, 2009
I've done several pieces in the past couple of years for Mary and Jeremy, two Parisian rockers who put on garage and psychobilly shows under the nom du rock of Deadly Sin. If memory serves this was the first thing I did for them, one of a series of 5 posters for garage rock gigs by various hip combos at La Mechanique Ondulatoire club. I had just about run out of ideas for caveman gags by the time the series came to an end. I'll post more of these later for the delectation of all you cave diggers and primitive rockers out there. Stay tuned for MORE ACTION!
Thursday, November 12, 2009
The Von Zippers and their lo-fi brand of garage punk came rippin' outta Calgary back in 1995 or thereabouts. They had that trashy mix of '66 and '77 punk that typified the garage punk style in those days and a great stoopid gimmick with their spiked Imperial German helmets and Lederhosen. Col. Klink would have loved them. I was lucky enough to get to do the sleeve for their debut 7" on band leader Helmut Von Zipper's very own Roto-Flex Records label. Herr Von Zipper came up with the idea of using Tom Daniel's kool '60s kustom The Red Baron in the drawing; I added in the tribute to one of my personal heroes and role models in this life, the great Eric Von Zipper himself. Around the same time I made the followup drawing posted here, which saw use on T-shirts and stickers back in those days. The VZs signed up with Estrus Records and have put out 3 full length albums to date, adding some early-'80s style politi-punk lyrics to their trademark trashed-out punk sound on the most recent one, The Crime Is Now! I've heard from a reliable source that their trashy punk sound has more recently given way to some sort of '70s infused Grand Funk Railroad influence (!!!) so I am looking forward to some new recordings to find out what the heck that's all about. It's a long way back to Germany, so... Stay tuned for MORE VAS IST LOS?!! DER GREASY CHICKEN?!! ACTION!
Wednesday, November 11, 2009
Tuesday, November 10, 2009
The Earaches were a tuff garage punk combo outta Seattle. My buddy Alan Wright was their original drummer and he's the one who asked me to do this drawing of the band, which was printed in the booklet of their 2003 CD debut Fist Fights, Hot Love on Steel Cage Records. That's Alan lurking at far left in the drawing. Alan was a tireless fan and contributor to the rock'n'roll scene as a musician, writer and 'zine publisher. He was one of the first people to take an interest in my work and helped me a lot in getting established as a rock'n'roll artist. I sure owe him a lot. Alan killed himself in 2004. Five years have gone by now and I still find it hard to believe that I'll never get another phone call from him, or another letter full of rock'n'roll news and tapes or CDRs of all the latest music that he was excited about. I never saw the dark side of Alan and I don't know much about the personal demons that overtook him, but for some of us rock'n'roll is more than just music, it's a vision of a better world than this that we hold on to and hope will see us through. Looking back I think that kind of feeling for the music we both loved may have been the common bond that made us friends. I miss this guy. More stuff coming soon. Stay tuned for MORE EULOGISIN' ACTION!
Monday, November 9, 2009
Sunday, November 8, 2009
LA's mighty Humpers graced the stage of the Pyramid Cabaret back in 1997. I had gotten a very serious sunburn the day before and my skin was boiled lobster red and peelin' but I sure wasn't gonna miss an event such as this. A liberal application of Vitamin B-E-E-R soon had me in show-goin' condition and I'm real glad I made it. The Humpers were one of those bands that just seem to exude a kinda struttin', whiskey-soaked sleaze rock vibe, smokin' weed onstage and blastin' forth those Chuck Berry riffs into the wee hours every night. The garage punk scene here was just getting started at the time so there weren't any local bands worthy of opening a show of this caliber. I have no memory of the other two bands listed on the poster and I suspect that it's just as well. The drummer of The Humpers told me that he liked my poster but he was more a fan of the female derrierre than of S&M so could I incorporate that aspect into a poster next time they played in Winnipeg? Always happy to oblige, I came up with a great idea for that next poster but sadly they never made it back. More wild stuff comin' up real soon, kids. Stay tuned for MORE MUTHAHUMPIN' ACTION!
Saturday, November 7, 2009
Made this poster back in 2004 for a show featuring several big names in the horror punk subgenre. Gotham Road was one of Michale Graves' post-Misfits projects. The promoter of the show came up with the cornball "Boils and Ghouls" tagline. Willy B from The Independents printed up a small run of silkscreen prints of this little number. I like drawing werewolves but I don't think I've come up with a really scary one yet. This one looks like he's leaning a bit more to the wolf side of things, if you know what I mean. Hang by your neck until our next thrilling update. Stay tuned for MORE ACTION!
Friday, November 6, 2009
Thee Virus were a high energy MC5-ish rawk combo from Spain who were recording for my friend Alberto's El Beasto Records label back around the turn of the century. My memory is a little foggy on this one but I think this art was meant to be a T-shirt for them. They also used one of my old drawings on the label of their LP, Alcohol Made Us What We're Today (sic!). I thought this would make a nice timely post due to the ongoing mass hysteria about the Swine Flu. Didn't Wonder Wart-Hog clear up that particular problem way back in the late '70s? Anyhow... Stay tuned for MORE INFECTIOUS ACTION!
Thursday, November 5, 2009
Made this CD/LP sleeve back in 1996 for those garage rockin' wild men from Gijon, Spain known as Dr. Explosion. These guys had it all; super catchy tunes, lots of wild energy, a crazed stage show and a boss musical mix of garage, surf, R&B, punk and pop. At the time they were branching out from Spain into the international garage scene. Later I believe they had some Spanish radio hits and focused most of their attention on their home turf. Last I checked they were still playing with singer/guitar mangler Jorge the only original member. Back in my pre-computer days I colored this artwork using the old 3 color overlay technique, wherein you hand cut the color separations on 3 sheets of clear plastic, one each for red, yellow and blue, overlapping them to create all the various color combinations. It's a labor intensive, somewhat mind numbing and now totally obsolete technique, but it resulted in a cool vintage comic book look that I liked a lot. Esteemed Roctober critic Flamin' Waymon Timbsdayle called this my "MADdest sleeve yet," and I don't think I've topped it even now in my ongoing attempts to pay homage to the mind altering work of Kurtzman, Elder, Davis and Wood. I did a 7" sleeve for the Explosion guys as well which will show up here at some future date. Stay tuned for MORE ACTION!
Wednesday, November 4, 2009
My buddy Cédric runs the Hog Maw Records label over there in France, bringing us big servings of the wildest, most drunken rockabilly around with side orders of primitive garage and blues action on the menu as well. He's put out great records by Mack Stevens, Hasil Adkins and a bunch more including a savage comp of ultra-obscure original rockabilly entitled Raw Meat. Lately he's been scouring the backwoods of Canada for raw talent and has signed up two stompin' and rockin' one man combos, Bloodshot Bill and Slim Sandy. I put together this comic strip ad last year to help him spread the word about all this fine as wine wax and it came out almost as primitive and semi-incoherent as the music it is supposed to be promoting. It's been printed in Dig It! and Blue Suede News, maybe some other places too. Should be some cool new Hog Maw releases out real soon. Maybe it's time for chapter 2 of Hog Maw Funnies? Stay tuned for MORE ACTION!
Tuesday, November 3, 2009
You don't really see many of these burned out hippie street person types anymore. They seem to have been replaced by the squeegee kids in much the same way that the Cro-Magnons replaced the Neanderthals. This drawing is based on my observations of the breed during their late '70s/early '80s heyday. I did actually see a guy once with a home made "peace sign in flower" tattoo as depicted here. New stuff coming soon. Stay tuned for MORE ACTION!
Monday, November 2, 2009
Dragsville was another hip byproduct of the late '90s garage punk outburst, one of two such 'zines being published outta Edmonton at the time with the word "Drag" in the title (the equally cool Dragstrip Riot being the other; I also did a cover for them around the same time). Zinemeister Tiemen K (more recently the man behind Teenage Depression 'zine) tells me that he only ran off a handful of copies of this issue. In fact, I've never even seen a copy of the thing myself. Anyone got a spare to sell or trade? I've been drawing masked wrasslers ever since I was a little kid but I think this may be the first one that ever made it to print. Just finishing up a couple juicy new pieces so watch this space for new thrills soon. Stay tuned for MORE ARACHNOPHOBIC ACTION!
Sunday, November 1, 2009
Poster for American Flamewhip's Activate CD release show from last year. Flamewhip are a tuff aggro-blues/rawk combo born from the ashes of The Vagiants. They contributed a great track to the Winnipeg Riot! comp and have 2 fine CD releases on Transistor 66. It seems they are suspended in some kinda cryogenic half-life right now but I understand they are emerging from cold storage to play at the Hot Live Guys farewell show in late December. They're a great hard rockin' band and I was sure happy to get to do this poster design for them. Also on the bill that night were 2 other T66 combos, The Gorgon with their art-primitive girl rock and melodic punkers The Fabulous Kildonans (I am obligated by a local by-law to inform you that Fab K's bassman Mark was a member of Winnipeg's legendary '80s hardcore kingpins The Stretch Marks). A small run of nice glossy prints of this poster were printed for sale at the show, now adding a touch of decorative color to prison cells and opium dens province-wide I am sure. Thanks to Art from T66 for gettin' this here deal together. Flamewhip logo designed by Mr. Johnny Crap. UPDATE: I am reliably informed (thanks, Al!) that the Flamewhip logo is the fine handiwork of Brendon Ehinger. Sorry, Brendon! Stay tuned for MORE ACTION!