Saturday, August 01, 2009

A minor disappointment

I'm not supposed to be here right now. You shouldn't be reading this post. In fact, if you're reading it today - August 1st - it shouldn't actually be posted. Instead, I should be at Uprise Fest (formerly known as Vertical Fest). I should be posting my review of the festival tomorrow, complete with pics and great stories of my misadventures. Unfortunately, I over extended myself on Bob's Graduation Party last weekend, and I just could not budget in the festival for this weekend. Oh, well...

In any event, I was actually thinking about posting videos from some of the bands that are at Uprise, so we could all commiserate together. But as I began searching You Tube for videos I stumbled upon some rather remarkable gems instead. Songs from my past that I haven't heard in years. So, I think I will share some of those with you. This way I won't be troubled by what I'm missing, and you' get a little glimpse of what I was listening to when I was a teenager/young adult.

Fast Forward, Prodigal from their 1984 Electric Eye release.



This is one of my all-time favorite songs. This ranks right up there with Beethoven's Moonlight Sonata and Pink Floyd's Comfortably Numb. And I would say that the guitar solo is almost on par to David Gilmore's solo in Comfortably Numb. Not as intense or as lengthy, but still emotionally wrought - especially with the keyboards in the background.
While I admit that the video itself is beyond "cheesey" (the word "lame" comes to mind), one must keep in mind that this was done by a Christian band in the 80's. That translates into very low-budget, and it had to be kinda sterile so as not to alienate anyone or offend the orthodoxy of the faith.
I recommend watching some of the other "related" videos by these guys. Especially Future Now, Just Like Real Life and Boxes.

Sanctuary, Daniel Amos from their 1984 Vox Humana release.



I admit that I'm not partial to live recordings, but this is one of my favs from these guys and I can't find any of their other songs in actual authorized video format. Just a bunch of stuff that fans have been throwing together.
I love that fact that they have a drummer and a percussionist! How cool of a band do you have to be for that?

Meltdown (At Madame Tussaud's), Steve Taylor (and Some Band) from his 1984 release Meltdown.



Believe it or not, this video was actually banned in the UK because of the "disturbing images" of the queen mother as her face was melting. I think one of the things that so endeared Steve Taylor to JT and I was his sharp sarcastic humor.
This video was actually not half bad as far as Christian videos of the 80's went.

Crimes, Rez from their 1984 release Hostage



For me, the really cool thing about watching this video is that I recognize several of the people in it from the times when I volunteered as a part of the stage crew for this band. The main criminal of the video was their stage manager during the last tour I saw them on. His name is Greg and he had his own band named Crash Dogs, and he was just a lot of fun to hang out with.
I had an ongoing "argument" with Wendy Kaiser (lead vocals on this song but shared vox with her husband Glenn) about the Chicago Bears. She insisted that the Bears were not a Super Bowl team and they would never win the big game. I said that she was wrong and that the team had enough talent with their defense, Walter Payton and the Fridge to get the job done. I was proven right shortly thereafter.

Of all the Christian bands I've been a fan of over the years, I'd have to say Rez was by far the greatest. They're incredibly open and honest with all of their fans. I remember they way they would spend hours out in the halls just talking to their fans, sharing with them, encouraging them. I remember a private conversation between myself and Glenn where he told me about his own struggles. Things that I struggle with too. I remember sitting down and eating dinner with them before each of the 3 shows I was a part of (that was a part of the "pay package" for the volunteers). Talking to them about anything and everything. They are living the gospel everyday by actually being a part of a Christian commune called JPUSA that is located in the second worst slum in the greater Chicago area. Their outreach touches the lives of thousands of people every day. The commune operates several businesses, including a recording studio, that help to fund all of their activities. I'm amazed by that level of commitment when I see the way some bands try to distance themselves from their Christianty these days.

I suppose missing out on Uprise isn't such a bad thing now that I've had this chance to share something special with all of you. I hope you've enjoyed it as much as I have.

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6 Comments:

Blogger One Wink at a Time said...

So sorry you had to miss the Fest. But there will be many more and Bob does not graduate every day.
Liked the Prodigal song. It reminds me of another song that I can't put my finger on. I especially liked that barrage of images around the 2:50 mark.
"Am I killing time or is it killing me?" Good lyrics.
I will be back to watch the other vids and finish reading your post.

7:48 PM  
Blogger M+ said...

Wink,
I agree. It was a more than acceptable trade-off. But I'm not missing Purple Door...
I'm glad you liked Prodigal. They were one of my favorite bands from back in the day. I think you'll enjoy their other stuff, too. I hope you'll check it out. I highly recommend Emerald City. It's not a real video, but you'll like the song.

5:09 PM  
Blogger Jeff A said...

Sorry you missed the fest but these videos are pretty cool. A real blast from the past!

2:10 PM  
Blogger M+ said...

Jeff,
I figured you'd remember some of these.

5:54 PM  
Blogger One Wink at a Time said...

Thanks for the recommendation. I liked the analogy (Emerald City)

7:42 PM  
Blogger M+ said...

Wink,
It is a great analogy. And the sound bytes are pretty cool, too.

5:49 PM  

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