Jim Guittard’s Place

Jim Guittard Music Publicity Animation Video

Posted in Uncategorized by guittard on September 19, 2009

I came across xtranormal.com and made this little piece. At Xtranormal.com you can write little scripts and make animation figures act them out. The site is cool. I had to pass it on.

Here’s my first little thing I did:

and of course to download my music go here:

http://www.jamendo.com/en/artist/Jim_Guittard

The American Dream Has Been Outsourced

Posted in Future, Life by guittard on May 18, 2009

Do you remember how Hunter S. Thompson was searching for the American Dream in Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas?

Well, the American Dream has been outsourced overseas. In what country it resides is a mystery. With all the bad economy, dream seekers have gotten the hell outta Dodge.

You say, “This is an outrage!” Yeah, it is an outrage.

Our nation is the most divided it has been since probably the Civil War or at least the 1960s. In 2009, we aren’t killing each other as in the Civil War but a war IS going on and I don’t mean the Iraq or Afghanistan Wars.

The present war is a war of ideas, principles, and the American Dream is quickly being put to shame.

The Framers in the Declaration of Independence guaranteed the following:

“That all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness.”

It further states that, “That whenever any Form of Government becomes destructive of these ends, it is the Right of the People to alter or to abolish it, and to institute new Government, laying its foundation on such principles and organizing its powers in such form, as to them shall seem most likely to effect their Safety and Happiness.”

Folks, something is completely out of whack as they say and we must do something.

Read your Declaration of Independence here:

http://www.archives.gov/exhibits/charters/declaration_transcript.html

Frogs In A Pot

Posted in Life by guittard on February 27, 2009

You know what? I think a lot of us are like frogs in a pot that are slowly being boiled alive. Why?

Because we get so used to the stuff around us that we don’t even know we are being cooked alive. You can put a frog in cold water in a pot and then put him on the stovetop and turn up the heat. The frog won’t jump out. The frog will get desensitized and wait patiently for death to come without even knowing it.

The bottom line is for us to wake the hell up! What are we here for? To do stupid stuff day after day after day after day? Get up from your mat and walk. Life is too short to compromise and waste away to nothing. Get up! Do something.

I don’t know who this is directed to but maybe myself. I’m sure a lot of people can relate.

The Quarter After

Posted in Music, Neo-psychedelia, Psychedelic by guittard on October 2, 2008

by Jim Guittard

Something has been going on for the past eight years. It is the musical revolution that the Brian Jonestown Massacre front man Anton Newcombe is famous for talking about. In 2000, a Neo-Psychedelic scene with half a dozen bands was birthed in Silverlake, California. The Quarter After was one of those pioneer bands that was turned on from the start and continues today to turn on others.

As described by the band itself, the Quarter After is psychedelic music for the 21st century. The group is led by the Campanella brothers: Dominic and Rob. They formed in the summer of 2000 with then bassist Dave Koenig and drummer Nelson Bragg.

They began playing shows at the Silverlake Lounge, 3 of Clubs, and Spaceland. It was here that the hipsters gathered by the thing that was going on. You ask what was going on? Well simply, it was a spiritual awakening or rather a wake up call. It was a real departure from the philosophy underlying the excess mainstream music.

A new social consciousness was formed which was held together by the reverence of the older music acts such as the Kinks, the Beatles, the Byrds, Bob Dylan, the Buffalo Springfield, Love, the Left Banke, the Flying Burrito Brothers, the Zombies, the Searchers, and the Association. There are too many bands to name.

It was not all by chance that this scene formed. Early on, the Campanella brothers made 4-track recordings of psychedelic pop. It was at the time of grunge. They were following the path set by the previous revival of psychedelic pop with bands like the Bangles, the Three O’Clock, and Dream Syndicate. In 1994, at a show at the Foothill Club in Signal Hill, Rob obtained the stamp of approval he needed to make psychedelic music. The show was a Sonic Boom concert where the Brian Jonestown Massacre was opening. It was even before the BJM had released any records. That night Rob listened to the psychedelic sounds of Anton’s band and something clicked. It was the green light and no turning back for Rob and Dom.

For a long time Rob remained behind the recording console as music producer for other psychedelic bands- the Beachwood Sparks, the Tyde, Dead Meadow, the Black Angels, and even the Brian Jonestown Massacre, and Sunstorm. It was only two years after establishing the Quarter After, that the band caught the ears of Arthur Lee of Love. The band was asked to open up for Arthur Lee’s first show after being released from prison. In May 2002, the Quarter After soared high at this Los Angeles Knitting Factory gig. They were well received but shortly thereafter unofficially split.

But Rob was pulled back in 2003. The band reformed with a new bassist (Victor Peсalosa), and drummer and opened for Dead Meadow, a band Anton had found for the Committee to Keep Music Evil label. With renewed interest in the Quarter After, Rob and the band resumed work on their debut album that had already been started. The tracks were mostly recorded live with very little overdubs. Much of the time, Anton Newcombe manned the recording console.

The standout tracks from the debut album were “Too Much To Think About,” “Always Returning,” “One Trip Later,” and “So Far To Fall.” The album on a whole has a hypnotic energy, featuring soaring Rickenbacker 12-String, high harmonies and a hint of raga rock influence. Any serious lover of the Byrds, Gene Clark and the Beatles would be satisfied with the album.

After the record was released in 2005, Newcombe asked them to go out on tour with him as opening band for the Brian Jonestown Massacre. The tour went well and the revolutionary spirit was kept alive. The boys were writing new songs and were preparing to record their second album once back in Los Angeles.

The second album is Changes Near and was released in April 2008. A standout track is “Sanctuary,” which has a spiritual undertone- a beautiful song about faith, where fear and doubt are wiped away. “Follow Your Own Way” and the title track also follow this theme of faith and believe in the self.

This is the part of the revolution that Newcombe has been pushing, where he once said “I’m here to destroy this fucked up system… I’ll use our strength. Let’s fucking burn it to the ground.” He was pointing to the whole music industry. Time has now caught up with him as the record companies and labels are no longer in charge. And the Quarter After is poised to be part of this new world.

Also see The Quarter After’s website

Article is reprinted from the October/November 2008 Edition
Perfect Sound Forever Online Music Magazine

The Sun Shines Today Tablature

Posted in Music by guittard on July 19, 2008
The Sun Shines Today
Intro

D	Bm	C	G 	2X

A		A4		2x

D		Bm
Push on through.
C		G
You know it ain't true.
D		Bm
Just keep it up.
C		G	A	A4
Drink from the cup.

D		Bm
No matter what they say,
C		G
The sun shines today.
D		Bm
Keep up the lovely art.
C		G	A	A4
Avoid the fiery dart.

A		A4
Nothing's very solid.
A		A4
It's all a bit spotted.
A		A4
Your treasure chest may disappear.
A		A4
It could be very near.
A		A4

D		Bm
What's the answer?
C		G
Avoid the big cancer.
D		Bm
Do what's fun.
C		G	A	A4
It has all begun.

D		Bm
Money can't guide you.
C		G
Only what is true.
D		Bm
Live by the wisdom.
C		G	A	A4
This isn't dumb.

A		A4
Nothing's very solid.
A		A4
It's all a bit spotted.
A		A4
Your treasure chest may disappear.
A		A4
It could be very near.
A		A4	2x

D		Bm
Push on through.
C		G
You know it ain't true.
D		Bm
Just keep it up.
C		G	A	A4
Drink from the cup.

A		A4	2x

A		A4
Nothing's very solid.
A		A4
It's all a bit spotted.
A		A4
Your treasure chest may disappear.
A		A4
It could be very near.

A		A4
Nothing's very solid.
A		A4
It's all a bit spotted.
A		A4
Your treasure chest may disappear.
A		A4
It could be very near.
A		A4

Outro (Slow)
D		Bm

C		G

A

Words and Music by Jim Guittard 2008

The Sun Shines Today

Time Between

Posted in Change, Family, Music, Risk and the Unknown, Society by guittard on May 9, 2008

From my journal on March 21, 2004 Dallas, Texas:

I am out on the balcony of my grandparents 2-story home smoking an Indian Bidis cigarette in the dark sneaking around like I am a child. I am 30 years old with nothing concrete to show.

As I sit and breathe in and out, I feel that familiar sinking, pushing down feeling on me. The fear and anxiety grips me along with the regret of much of my life. The feeling is that I should have spoken up for myself and not pretended that all was fine.

I’ve been in my current living situation for about seven months. I have never wanted to be like everybody else, to live an insignificant life of mediocrity. I just never knew my thing or felt confident enough to express it.

I think back on my college days in Colorado and the years I wasted going through the motions. I remember watching on late night cable “The Lost Weekend” where the actor locks himself up in his apartment to try to shake the booze cravings and to be a writer. Shame and fear or whatever else always kept him down. For me it was the fear of the unknown that got me caught up or the fear of breaking from tradition or the mold.

Fastforward to today 2008.

I guess, enough is enough, right?

Well, I have been in Bulgaria for the past two years with the Peace Corps teaching English at a high school. Not really teaching, mostly supervising. Ha, ha, ha….

Jim - Sofia, Bulgaria

I told you I wanted to do things different. I have been writing songs and posting about my experiences in a foreign culture. It is pretty foreign. I have even written some songs in the Bulgarian language.

Gangster by Jim Guittard

Stachkata by Jim Guittard

Blog title comes from Chris Hillman’s song on The Byrds 1967 Album “Younger Than Yesterday”

Optimistic Music

Posted in Good Music, Rock and Roll History by guittard on November 17, 2007

I think we should get back to the mindset of the past. At least the more open-minded thinking of the ’60’s. You say, oh, let’s don’t live in the past, let’s move forward.

I counter you with, “the thinking of the 1960’s was more healthy I think than today.” I’m all about moving forward and it seems that this period was about moving forward for the better.

It is my opinion that if all listened to the music of the ’60’s or that type of thinking then the world would be that much better. You’ve all heard the saying “garbage in garbage out.” Well, put this more positive type of thinking In.

Here’s my top songs that may clean up the pessimistic or status quo thinking. Just look to the words for inspiration out of this fearful terrorist world we live.

1. Bob Dylan – The Times Are A-Changin’

2. The Beatles – Think For Yourself

3. Gene Clark – Keep On Pushin’

4. Stephen Stills (Manassas) – Jesus Gave Love Away For Free

5. The Zombies – Time Of The Season

6. The Byrds – Turn, Turn, Turn

7. The Rolling Stones – Salt of the Earth

8. The Association – The Time Is Today

9. The Kinks – Animal Farm

10. George Harrison – What Is Life?

11. Pink Floyd – Burnin’ Bridges

12. The Beach Boys – I Know There’s An Answer

13. Buffalo Springfield – For What It’s Worth

14. Crosby, Stills, Nash, and Young – Teach Your Children

15. Donovan – Catch The Wind

16. The Doors – Take It As It Comes

17. John Lennon – Give Me Some Truth

18. The Lovin’ Spoonful – Do You Believe In Magic?

19. Simon and Garfunkle – Bridge Over Troubled Water

20. Sly and The Family Stone – Everybody Is A Star

The Need For a Music Revolution

Posted in Change, Good Music, Music, Psychedelic, Rock and Roll History by guittard on November 24, 2006

REVOLUTION NOW:

A BOMP EDITORIAL!

by Greg Shaw

Those of you who remember the old Bomp Magazine (1970-1979)  know that my editorials were one of the staple features. The topic was usually “the State of Rock and Roll.” In the early to mid 1970s, when music had never been so oppressively controlled by corporate powers, and choice so limited, it seemed insane to believe that we, as fans, could ever have a meaningful voice in what we were allowed to hear, or how it was presented. But we had to try, because we loved rock & roll and didn’t want to let those bastards kill it.

Strangely enough, all the things dreamt of in those editorials came to pass, and sooner than anyone expected. Local bands re-emerged. The great raw sounds of the ’50s and ’60s were reissued (either by major labels under fan supervision, or on fan-made compilations), and had a galvanizing influence on a new generation of bands. Punk Rock was born in the spirit of the ’60s garage explosion, blowing open the doors that the industry had held fast against any fresh breath of rebellion. Vast networks of indie labels, fanzines, radio shows, record distributors and more, scarcely imaginable in 1975, were fully in place two or three years later.

 

Bomp’s editorials didn’t cause these things to happen, of course; rather, they voiced the need for them, encouraged people to believe in and work for change, and pointed out areas in which progress seemed possible. There was intense resistance from the established order to the kinds of changes we wanted, but amazingly enough, a relative handful of people who shared a common vision were able to make a huge difference simply by doing the right thing at the right time.

I stopped writing editorials 20 years ago, and don’t intend to make a practice of it again. My views are my own, and I recognize that I am of no mind to formulate any grand theories of pop or anything else. Yet I can’t help being struck lately by the similarities between 1975 and today.

Item: In both cases the record industry had turned its back on new talent and concentrated on a handful of boring superstars they could count on to sell a huge volume of records.

Item: In both times, local music either didn’t exist at all, had no focus, or lacked any kind of scene to take root in.

Item: Then as now, audiences had been turned into passive consumers of prefab culture, with no interest in creating anything of their own

All this could be coincidence. Or it could be a clue that the conditions for a revolution are once again ripe.

There is a misconception about revolution, namely that they are supposed to accomplish somethng lasting. This is simply not true. What a revolution does is replace an existing order with a new one, which left to itself, will soon become as rigid as the one it replaced. Revolution is a process, and its main payoff is to add value to the lives of those who participate in it, and improve conditions in general for awhile. When it stops moving, it dies.

The point of a music revolution is not to replace today’s pop stars with a new slate; it is to kick out the jams! Riot in the streets! Do it now! etc. It’s all about direct engagement, and the result of all that activity should be a better time for all, a party that will keep everyone coming back to do it some more. And not only that–“parties” are not radical in themselves. The sense of being more fully alive, empowered, having an impact on your world and your culture, these are the chief rewards. This is what rock & roll at its best can provide–leading to the idea that perhaps rock & roll itself should be seen not as a genre, not as a mere noun or even a verb, but also as a process.

Punk rock was a fantastic thing for those who took part in it, but listening to the Sex Pistols today is not a “punk rock” experience: it is an “oldies” experience. Same for the revolutions of the ’50s and ’60s. The “My Generation” of The Who will be on Social Security soon! The only meaningful revolution is the one that is taking place right now, if at all. There is no other time but now that we can live in, existentially speaking, and we either seize or or we don’t. We can use history to see what other revolutions have looked and sounded like, but we can’t truly know what it is until it’s happening all around us, and we have a personal role to play.

It may be folly to believe you can alter the course of the world, which is inevitably becoming more centralized, more controlled by large money interests, and less free–in terms of mass pop culture, at any rate. Out on the fringes, the Internet is enabling more and more variety, which is great, as long as you’re satisfied with a very small cult following and no money. This you are free to have. But the dream of rock & roll, from Elvis to the Beatles to Nirvana, has been the dream of doing something cool and changing the lives of millions with it. This is a dream each new generation of musicians embraces, for better or worse. And no matter how great the odds seem to be against it, I firmly believe it can happen any time people decide they’ve had enough crap.

Now, there are a couple of things necessary for a revolution. One is that the people be unbearably oppressed. Oppressed we surely are, with only three major record companies now controlling all channels of distribution (even indie records are distributed by a branch of EMI) and desiring nothing more than for us to shut up and buy more Britney Spears and Eminem. But “unbearably”? There are so many other obsessions these days; a kid with a new Nokia cell phone doesn’t have a clue he’s missing the joys of being part of a rock & roll scene. The masses will not rise in the name of something they can’t even imagine.

The other ingredient lacking is some charismatic band to carry the revolutionary banner. There’s been no shortage of overnight sensations in music recently, of course. But whatever their success, acts like Oasis, Radiohead, Beck, or (you name it) have not inspired their generation to “seize the means of production” or whatever it is proletariats are supposed to do. Any such band, I suspect, will need to be a whole lot more subversive than anything we’ve seen before. And probably something incapable of being packaged and sold for a profit!

(In many ways, the Grateful Dead met most of these criteria: underground till the end, they did create a substantial alternative culture around them. Unfortunately it was not a particularly viable one, and not one that many of us would care to join. But it is a valid example of what I’m talking about, I must admit.) Then there are “paint-by numbers” bands, starting possibly with Bomp alumni the Flamin’ Groovies, who think that by retracing the steps of past heroes, they can launch some new Heroic Age. Much as I have enjoyed some of these bands, their premise has clearly been proven wrong. (If we can’t learn from our own history, we may be condemned to endlessly reissue it…)

And yeah, there’s rap… but among other problems, rap comes out of a completely different cultural vein. I’m talking about a tradition called “rock and roll” that has been invented and re-invented continuously since the early ’50s, going always back to its roots and coming up with something new and more powerful. In my opinion, rap is the belated black response to punk, parallel to it in some ways, and like punk, long past its most creative days. Public Enemy and their ilk were subversive, in their way, in their time. But that revolution died when its heroes grabbed the gold chains rather than holding out for real change. Sure, some cool stuff has gone on in the name of rap, not to mention reggae, techno, the rave scene, and so on, empowering individuals in the context of music culture. Movements have arisen, and changed lives in way I can’t but admire. But all this is a far cry from what rock and roll has done in the past, and from what I expect it to do for me, being who I am. So I address myself to what I believe can be done in the name of Rock and Roll.

An artist who will command the world’s imagination and set it on a new musical course is what’s needed to set off a wide-scale revolution. In their wake, a whole wave of superior bands would be able to follow. But such an artist may or may not appear, like it or not.

Revolution, however, does not need to be as massive as all that. It is a process that begins at the grass-roots level, and needn’t necessarily rise above it. Horizontal growth may actually be what’s called for… (I’ve always maintained that if punk rock had happened on labels like Rough Trade instead of EMI and Warner Brothers, it would not have burned out so soon.) The point of revolution, in this sense, is to be a part of it. That’s where the pleasure comes from–the involvement, the participation in creating something. And this is a revolution we can have–if we want it badly enough to make it happen.

The conditions for it are better now than they have been in quite awhile. Healthy local music scenes are emerging all over, with bands whose vision embraces folk and blues, ’60s pop and ’70s punk, all the elements of the tradition they yearn to be a part of, with intelligence and historical savvy. I won’t mention any bands, but there are some great ones out there all of a sudden (Parenthetically: of course there are always plenty of cool local bands; most of them, however, have nothing to do with any of this, not to knock them. It may sound vague, but I know the kind of band I mean when I see it, and so will you.) I’ve talked with many in the past year or two and the same ideas keep comig up: there’s something happening here, we’re all a part of it, we don’t know what it is, there’s no marketing slogan, no ad campaign, but it’s real and we can feel it. And that’s the way it ought to be. Right now, there’s no excuse for anyone who loves music not to get out and support the good bands, who are either in your town or coming through soon. Don’t wait to read about it in Rolling Stone; put your ear to the ground.

! ! ! ! ! ! ! The revolution begins with you ! ! ! ! ! ! !

http://bomp.com/book.html