Among the many, many, many projects of multiple Grammy winner Gastavo Santaolalla, the Bajofondo Tango Club is my hands down favorite.
The Bajofondo Tango Club, now simply Bajofondo, with their eclectic mix of tango, trip hop, house and whathaveyou stands among the most accomplished of the Electrotango groups that have brought Tango back into the mainstream of dance music and worldwide popular culture.
This is Gustavo Santaolalla on what I'm thinking is a Carvin, Fred Holdsworth headless guitar, DJ Juan Campodónico playing the triggered sequences, Luciano Supervielle on piano and scratching, Martín Ferrés playing the bandoneón, Verónica Loza is the video jockey and vocals, Javier Casalla playing the violin, Gabriel Casacuberta on bass and Adrian Sosa on the drums.
In early August 1969, two weeks before the Woodstock Arts and Music Festival was held on Max Yasgur's farm in upstate New York, approximately 20,000 music lovers showed up at Fuller Field (I think) on the banks of the mighty Huron River in Ann Arbor, Michigan to hear B. B. King, Muddy Waters, Howlin' Wolf, Otis Rush, Big Mama Thornton, Son House, T-Bone Walker and Lightnin' Hopkins among others, play the blues at the first Ann Arbor Blues Festival.
I didn't happen to be there as I didn't even know it was happening until after it was over.
I dunno what happened on that one.
The comparatively unknown Magic Sam was scheduled to take the stage at 3 PM Sunday afternoon but was late, forcing Charles Musselwhite to the stage an hour early.
When he finally arrived he had no band.
He took the stage that afternoon with Paul "Buffalo" Bruce Barlow from Commander Cody and His Lost Planet Airmen on the bass guitar and future, veteran Chicago blues session man Sam Lay on drums and proceeded to kick ass.
When he walked off that stage about an hour later, he was a star.
Barely 90 days later on December 1, 1969 "Magic" Sam Maghett died of a heart attack.
He was 32 years old.
From the American Folk Blues Festival performances which we keep telling people they should buy, this is the great Magic Sam on vocals and Earl Hooker's Les Paul guitar, Mack Thompson on bass guitar and Robert St. Julien playing the drums with his wallet on the snare to deaden it just a tad.
If life were fair, Rance Allen would be a national treasure and the Rance Allen Group would be a household name.
Needless to say .....
Anyway, the first time I saw the Wattstax movie, I thought that the Rance Allen Group had the best day out of all of them in a show that featured among others, the Staple Singers, Eddy Floyd, Isacc Hayes, William Bell, Johnny Taylor, Albert King, The Bar-Kays and really the entire Stax-Volt stable of artists.
Wattstax was held in the Los Angeles Memorial coliseum on August 20, 1972, it was intended to commemorate the seventh anniversary of the Watts riots and was/is widely thought of as "The Black Woodstock".
In order to insure that the people of Watts could attend, the price of a ticket was one dollar.
This is Rance Allen on guitar and vocals, his brothers Steve on the bass guitar and Thomas on the drums.
The Rance Allen Group.
Lying on the Truth.
And then, just in case you like your gospel with a touch of the funk, flash forward some three plus decades and here they are again, Rance, Steve and Thomas Allen along with someone I'm thinking is Chris Byrd but can't get a good enough look at to be confident about it, live at the Stellar Awards.
I'm posting this story because I can distinctly remember my mother telling me about going to Saginaw, Michigan as a young woman and seeing a giant who she was pretty sure stood 9 feet tall.
I vividly remember thinking to myself that this was an extreme exaggeration at best.
Robert Pershing Wadlow, "The Gentleman Giant" passed away on this date in 1940 at the age of 22.
At 8'11.1" he is the tallest person in known human history.
Robert was born on February 22, 1918, in Alton Illinois. At birth he weighed a normal eight pounds, six ounces. At six months of age he had grown to weigh 30 pounds. A year later at 18 months, he weighed 62 pounds. He continued to grow at an astounding rate, reaching six feet, two inches and 195 pounds by the time he was eight years old.
At age 18, he had reached eight feet, four inches tall, and weighed 390 pounds. His clothing required three times the normal amount of cloth, and his size 37 shoes cost $100.00 a pair (a lot of money back in the 1930's). Two years later his shoes were provided free by the International Shoe Company.
At 20 Robert began travelling for the shoe company, visiting over 800 towns and 41 states. His father had to modify the family car, removing the front passenger seat so Robert could sit in the back seat and stretch out his long legs. The father and son team traveled over 300,000 miles on their goodwill tour for the shoe company.
Robert's size 37 feet had troubled him for many years. He had little sensation in his feet and did not feel any chafing until blisters formed. While making an appearance in Manistee, Michigan in July 1940, a fatal infection set in when such a blister formed. On July 4th, doctors had Robert confined to a hotel bed, unable to find suitable accommodations at the local hospital. Days later, after emergency surgery and blood transfusions, the infection lingered and his temperature continued to rise. At 1:30 a.m., on the 15th of July, Robert Wadlow passed away in his sleep.
Robert's body was brought back to his home town of Alton for burial. The 1,000-pound casket required a dozen pallbearers, assisted by eight other men. Out of respect for Alton's Gentle Giant, all city businesses closed for the funeral. Over 40,000 people signed the guest register.
Click on the photo of Robert and his 5'11" father for Robert's page in the Alton Web Museum.
Tomorrow July 7, 2012 begins the seven day festival of San Fermin held in Pampalona, Spain the highlight of which is the famed "Running of the Bulls".
I've put together posts on this before and have always failed to post them as this week is usually sketchy for me since it features the US Independance Day holiday, the little wiffer and my wedding anniversary and a number of family birthdays.
I'll be honest with you here, the Roan family is out partying.
Should you care to attend in the future, these guys claim to have the best balconies.
Of the many short videos I've seen on this, the promo featured below shot in HD, much of it slow motion is clearly the best. It makes me want to watch the movie when I get back home.