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April 10, 1979 - Image 5

Resource type:
The Michigan Daily, 1979-04-10

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arts & entertainment

Some rock and roll bands rise to
critical fame on the strength of their
studio recordings, while others base
their reputation on the live show. It's a
fairly clear cut dichotomy: There are
groups that are primarily studio-
oriented and others who do it better
live. Of course, the lines do not get
crossed and there are some perfor-
mers, The Who for one, that are superb
in both mediums.
But when the controlled atmosphere
of the studio is taken away, these
"studio groups" fall short in live per-
formance. Led Zeppelin is the classic
example here. It's a simple fact' that
many effects of the studio production
process just can't be recreated in a live
situation, so bands like Yes and ELO
have to rely on tapes, which starts
lawsuits over faked performances and
takes the concerns the farthest- away
from what a rock and roll show is or
should be all about.
The sublime essence of live rock is
two part, involving the dance and the
party, and no group inspires their
audiences to do both simultaneously as.
well as The J. Geils Band, which

can gz
provided a welcome sanctuary from an
otherwise dismal Sunday night for an
enthusiastic crowd at Ypsilanti Bowen
Fieldhouse. Peter Wolf and company
always perform like an audience's best
friend, always living up to expec-
The foundation of the near ten-year
career of The J. Geils Band has been
their track record in the concert arena.
While their albums have fluctuated in
both critical and commercial response,
the results elicited from their frequent
touring have remained constant. This is
a band whose first album to garner at-
tention was the live Full House recor-
ded in 1972 Detroit. From that point on,
Detroit and "Geils" went hand in hand
like old lovers. And this romance has
always produced memorable concerts.
THE FIRST time I saw the band was
in 1974 when they were promoting
Ladies Invited, somewhat of a
digression from the straight ahead
boogie of the extremely successful
Bloodshot album of the year before. I
had never experienced a concert where
the crowd reaction was so intense and
infectious. Everyone danced from

beginning to end, stomping and (raving
when Peter Wolf did a little "Detroit
Demolition" on an organ that refused to
function by pushing the disabled in-
strument off the stage. At another con-
cert, Lester Bangs, the rambling dean
of rock journalese, joined the band for
an encore and performed. an inspired
solo on his typewriter. It was rock
craziness at its finest and wildest.
Now, a few years later, the J. Geils
Band is again on top with Sanctuary; an
album which reaffirms their hard rock
side after the stylistic change of
Monkey 'Island (their first self-
produced work, somewhat overlooked
by the rock public). Their new material
comprised the first half of Sunday's
show, followed by all the old favorites.
The show-stopping "Jus' Can't Stop
Me" began the festivities as Peter Wolf
took over as the director. The paradigm
model of the rock and roll frontman, a
clean-shaven Wolf with his jive stage
rap and dark glasses danced and jum-
ped and generally motivated things. Af-
ter "I Could Hurt You," a chair was
brought out and Wolf proceeded to give
a "Recitation On Rock;" describing the
ultimate concertgoers as those who
"wake up in the morning and brush
their teeth with rock and roll" and end
up dancing the night away. -
"Wild Man", the big radio hit "One
Last Kiss," the title song and "Teresa,"
a soft ballad duet by Wolf and keyboar-
dist Seth Justman. Unfortunately, the
mood needed to convey the tenderness
of this song was never achieved amidst
the yells and calls from the audience.
Mellow tunes just can't come across in
such noise, which was a shame because
"Teresa" is one of the more

sophisticated Wolf/Justman com-
With the new ones out of the way,
what else were these guys going to do
but play an hour's worth of oldies? Big
hits time, which is what everyone
comes to the show for. One criticism
that can be made about any Geils con-
cert is that they all seem to be for-
mulated. One knows exactly where
Wolf is going to throw in a "Blow Your
Face Out! !" and all the other cliched
cues. But things actually stay pretty
loose so that Wolf can extend the story
introduction to "Must of Got Lost",
delay the final cadences of "Detroit
Breakdown" a number of times, or
wander backstage looking for girls to
bring on stage during "Love-itis."
While Wolf is the visual focus with his
stage antics, the other musicians just
stay towards the back and thrash their
instruments, even though they've
probably played all these songs 90
times this year. J. Geils makes his
Flying-V scream, relying more on the
flash and feel rather than technical ex-
pertise in his leads. Justman sets the
horns in his Leslie cabinets whirring at
an incredible speed with his open hand
keyboard technique, as drummer
Stephen Jo Bladd and bassist Danny
Klein set down the thumping rhythms.
And what superlative can be used to
describe the harp. playing of Magic
Dick that hasn't been used before? He
is simply the "Whammer Jammer."
Tightness is a quality desired in a
number of activities, but it is of the ut-
most importance to the stage presence
of a rock and roll band. With J. Geils,
what you hear on record is what you get
in concert.

The Michigan Daily-Tuesday, April 10, 1979-Page 5
Attention cut-ups !
Ark hosts yuck fest
All major cities have them, and now the comedian's amateur night is
coming to Ann Arbor. "Every dorm hallway has a cut-up; every fraternity has
a few clowns . .. Here's theirchance," says David Siglin, promoter of what he
hopes will be the first in a series of amateur comedy nights.
"I predict that it will be very good," adds Siglin who manages the Ark cof
feehouse with his wife, Linda. The event will be Tuesday, May 15, and eaclhn-
tertainer will be allowed between five and fifteen minutes to deliver a routine.
"The idea is just like the Hoot nights we have every Wednesday night, except
this is for the funny people rather than the musical.'
Siglin wants to talk to people interested in performing at the evening event
which will be held at the Ark on Hill Street. "There are some limits: Nothing
blatantly obscene, etc.," he says. "We want to get it started this summer' ;nd
then continue in the fall, hopefully on a regular basis."
For more information call the Ark at 761-1451, and ask for David "Thj Im-
presario" Siglin.
Canterbury 10oft-State Streetf
Thursday evening, 8:00 pm, April 12
Cubs Film Institute's
The. Last Supper" from Cuba's Tomas Gutierrez
Alea, is hardedged satire of the highest orderj
satire that lays bare the treachery and folly of,
men who sin against men in the name of Christ":
Susan Stark, Film Critic, Det. Free Press.
Canterbury Loft/Office of Ethics and Religion
- ---- -

Distracting delights
at punch less party

The idea behind a Ceilidh (kay-
lee)-or musical party-is that a small
collection of talented individual per-
formers share a stage together and
take turns offering songs, jokes, and
stories. The success of such an evening
of entertainment has little to do with the
musical quality of the performers, for if
it did, this last weekend's package at
the Ark of Martha Burns, Dedee Palaz-
zola, and Lisa Null would surely have
created several enchanted evenings.
Jokingly billed as "Girls! Girls!
Girls!"the Ceilidh boasted three very
fine talents who were such different
personalities that the collective per-
formance never seized a certain mood
or feeling, and, in a sense, never went
anywhere. Though it's a frightful
metaphor, watching Saturday's per-
formance was like changing channels
constantly to try to catch three really
good programs at once.
Ark veterans know that the Ceilidh
format can be devastatingly effective
when the performers, either through
long association or a chance,
fascinating juxtapoisition of repertoir-
s, find the right "chemistry." These
three women didn't really have it, nor
should they have necessarily have been
expected to, having never performed
together in this way.
"I LOVE IT!" sparkled Martha Bur-
ns, the only Ann Arbor resident in the
group, as she discussed the format.
"The differences are what make it ex-
citing." Her enthusiasm for the event
quite dominated the evening, and she
entertained not only with her fine selec-
tion of old American songs, but also a
sampling of stories and corney jokes.
Almost slap-happy at times, Burns
seemed to control the mood of the other
performers as well as the musical con-
tent of the show.
She sings with a wonderful, old-timey
voice which sounds like it belongs on
the "authentic" recordings of the songs
which she sings. Succeeding better in
the lower registers, Burns has a ten-
dency to push her voice a bit, almost
overdoing the creakiness which is her
special, effective trademark.
Dedee Palazzola grew up in Ann Ar-

bor, had her wedding reception at the
Ark, but has since moved away. Her
brief return was a special treat, and she
displayed her soft voice and solid guitar
finger picking for those who have only
been in Ann Arbor for three or four
years. Through her songs, many of
them either bluesy or bitter, have a lot
of power and guts, Palazzola's overall
performance was much more subdued
than either Burns' or Lisa Null's, and
she seemed to get a little lost in the
Null's big voice and jolly, assertive
friendliness had their moments, but
never got the chance to pace the
evening the way they might have
without the constant shifting from per-
former to performer. Her songs, ac-
companied instrumentally by
travelling companion Bill Shute on the
guitar, were very interesting British
Isles and New England songs with
powerful choruses which everyone took
delight in joining.
There was more talent on stage than
had an effective outlet. Individually,
each of the women would have been
worth the admission price, but as one
act, perhaps one should have sent
"regrets" to the musical party.
"Racial Politics and Social
Transformation in the
Assistant Professor of Political Science
University of Michigan
APRIL 11-12:00-1:30 P.M.
346 Old A & D BLDG.
909 Monroe St.


s. z

will be announced

Wednesday, April 11, 4:00 pan
Rack Iam Lct.zHall'
Main Floor, RadCkham1 Buildirg
Open to tlhe Public'
"Making Up Stories"
Essayist and NovdKl
Author of
Run River (1964)
Souching Towall$thlkhem (196,
Pa y C t aC It Lays (1977)
A Bok o Conmn Prayer (1977)'

ell, "

She had Oscar fever
No doubt as part of a bold attempt to get a last minute nomination for an
academy award, actress C;heryl Ladd pitched herself, delightful coun-
tenance first, into a four-foot pool of sludge. Notice there is no grime on her
Prof. John Broomfield
A history course to explain the conflicts and crises of the present.
Cross-cultural; comparative; thematic
Did you ever expect to find together in one course: Karl Marx, Dean Billy
Frye, Queen Victoria,- the Anarchists, Ayatollah Khomeini, Charles Darwin,
Zen and the Art of Motorcycle Maintenance, Chairman Mao, E. F. Schu-
macher, Bella Abzug, and many, many more?
Why not try it? Two course numbers for your choice: History
180 (available also Summer Term lIlA), and History 350. SCO
has the dope.

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