arthur russell was an enigmatic eclectic cellist and musician who died from complications of AIDS. he made all sorts of music and thus had no marketable place in our dismal structure of genre bound musical merchandise.watching the dvd i was immediately struck by something that has been bothering me for quite some time, the very thing that made me stop djing and turn to such pursuits as recording random sounds and rescuing 78 rpm discs. music devoid of personal meaning and merely as a form of commerce is the antithesis of how i need music to function in my life.
arthur russell was someone who had to make music. when he died someone said it was as if he disappeared into his music.only now is someone actually releasing the scads of recordings he made in his home. some of the music is almost too personal seemingly but even if you think you don't particularly like the style he's using or of you can't understand the words you find yourself dragged along with him in feeling until you're thinking , ' how the hell did i get here?'. music for me if it's successful makes me feel something unique and spontaneous not want to acquire something or behave like a robot.
russell was highly influenced by the newly emerging disco/house scene in nyc particularly david mancuso's seminal loft.he ended up creating 2 favorite pieces of music from the time- which are largely incomprehensible divorced from what was than a sort of free dance scene powered exclusively by the music and dancing- ecstatic bacchanalian release in the pagan sense.this is everything music should be about-submergence in a feeling.
loose joints/ is it all over my face?
dinosaur l/ go bang!
i find this fascinating. it's very early- 1986.people were desperately trying to sound innovative in the early to mid 90s trying to make stuff on this tip.
arthur russell/ let's go swimming
the word is soul. music with soul and heart. where has it gone?why did we give it up and let it go so easily? it's so lonely without it.
arthur russell died april 4 1992.
lola/ wax the van