Monday, July 16, 2007
Richard Davies with The Flaming Lips
Once again, I have to say I love YouTube. I get an extra kick out of finding a live clip from a gig that I attended. It's like a chance to re-live a little bit of your life in extremely low resolution. That's what watching this clip from a 1995 Richard Davies gig at Brownies in NYC feels like for me. Watching the clip I can remember how hot the club was that night, how the air stank of sweat, humidity and cigarette smoke, and how the music was awe inspiring. Even though I can only see a highly pixelated image and hear bad sound through my computer, somehow it's enough to open the floodgates of my memory. This was a pretty special show, both because of the high quality of the performance, and the fact that it was one of only two gigs in which the Flaming Lips served as Davies' backing band.
Some of you might be thinking at this point what the heck were the Flaming Lips doing backing up the guy from Supertramp? Different guy. This Richard Davies was leader of Australia's The Moles, and co-leader of Cardinal. For a shining moment I was certain Richard's music would conquer the world. I think pretty much everyone in attendance at this show felt the same way. I remember talking to a guy who was fairly prominent in the music industry after the gig and we both agreed the show made us feel like Richard's was the only music that actually mattered. I remember thinking to myself the Flaming Lips would be better off serving as Richard's backing band full time, which gives you a pretty good sense of my ability to predict the future.
Sometimes watching these YouTube videos I find myself wishing better audio of the song was available. In this case it is (sort of). These two live tracks were released as b-sides on a CD single for "Sign Up Maybe For Being." They were not recorded at the legendary Brownies gig, but several days before in the Lips hometown of Norman, Oklahoma. [Whoever put this video up also put up one of the Flaming Lips playing the Moles' "What's The New Mary Jane," which if memory serves was the encore performance that night.]
Meanwhile the world is still waiting for The Flaming Lips to back up that other Richard Davies on "Goodbye Stranger" and "The Logical Song."