Sunday, February 28, 2010

Stomp/Beach Boys

"The wait is over" announced the Ponderosa Stomp Foundation as they revealed that this year's stomp will take place at the House of Blues in New Orleans on September 24 and 25. They have yet to announce the line up, but sadly I doubt that I will be there, and from comments on Facebook it's clear that a lot of Stomp fans have been pissed off by the change of date. I will be going to the US in late April to take in some or all of the Festival Louisiane in Lafayette, the Baton Rouge Blues Festival and the New Orleans Jazzfest. But the icing on the cake would undoubtedly have been the Stomp. So I am disappointed that it has now been separated from the Fest and the other festivals in the spring.
BBC4 showed a fascinating programme on Dennis Wilson of the Beach Boys last night. I love the Beach Boys music and Dennis was an integral part of their best period in the sixties. He was the blond, good looking one, the only genuine surfer in the group, hammering away on the drums with his hair flopping all over the place. But his decline over the ensuing years was the archetypal rock and roll story, marrying and divorcing several times, creativity affected by drink and drugs, slurred appearances on television while other band members looked on in disgust, until his eventual death aged 39 - drowned while under the influence. Of course Brian Wilson was the creative genius of the band and, mixed up though he undoubtedly was, at least he survived. And for that we are all thankful. The Beach Boys were and always will be one of the truly great sixties groups - probably THE greatest of them all.


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