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May 13, 1988 - Image 32

Resource type:
Text
Publication:
Michigan Daily Summer Weekly, 1988-05-13

Disclaimer: Computer generated plain text may have errors. Read more about this.

Music" (1979) and "Remain in Light." Only "77"
and "The Name of This Band Is Talking Heads"
(1982) aren't gold. "Naked," however, should
boost all the past albums considerably.
Frantz and Weymouth first moved to New
York in the fall of 1974, about six months after
Byrne had done so. The three-who met while
students at the Rhode Island School of Design-
lived together in a loft on the Lower East Side
about two blocks from C.B.G.B. (page 15), where
they would first play as Talking Heads some eight
months later and where the new-wave movement
in rock was born. "We were living in a loft with a
bathroom in the hall," Frantz remembers. "No
hot water. No shower. Friends would invite us
over for dinner and we'd take towels along and
ask, 'Is it OK if we take a shower?'" Today,
Frantz and Weymouth live in Westport, Conn.,
with their two daughters, Robin, five, and Egan,
18 months. Byrne owns a loft in Manhattan. So
does Harrison, who also has inherited his par-
ents' house in Shorewood, Wis., a northern sub-
urb of Milwaukee.
Back at lunch, the conversation turns from music
CF: What is this I hear about President Reagan
announcing something about outside parties stir-
ring up the Palestinians? Did you hear about
that? Outside agitators were stirring up the
Palestinians?
TW: It was probably the CIA.
CF: Sounded familiar.
JH: What I think is interesting is that the Pales-
tinians have finally discovered civil disobedience.
And it's working for them in ways that all of their
more aggressive actions never worked at all. Ap-
parently there's such sympathy building up for
them. And they're doing simple things like closing
their shops. And it's having a far greater effect
than blowing up some kids on a bus. It's hard to
discipline yourself-to sit and be beaten and let
people get hurt and die.
TW: When Moses was directed to take his
tribes out of Egypt, they displaced a lot of tribes
from there.
JH: Is there historical evidence that Moses actu-

I

I

attention 365 days a year." Outside projects also
give the four a chance to flex different creative
muscles. "It allows you to explore avenues that are
easily explored as a solo artist or a producer rather
than to try and fit Talking Heads into a genre that
is perhaps not appropriate," says Harrison. And it
pays dividends for the band itself: "I think it en-
courages us and expands us," says Weymouth,
"and it enables us to be more open in the frame-
work of Talking Heads."
The name of this band could have been The Vogue Dots
Tina Weymouth remembers these potential
names for the band: The Tunnel Tubes, Subway
of Love, Muscle of Love, The Vogue Dots. There
were many others. They couldn't perform until
they came up with a name. Talking Heads was
the only finalist. A friend of Byrne, Frantz
and Weymouth told them about the term, jargon
for television newscasts that show the heads of
anchormen rather than action footage. They
liked the connotation of the term. "Talking
Heads meant a lot of content but not much vis-
uals," she says.
"I never thought Talking Heads would be as
successful as it has been," says Harrison. "I
thought we were too strange. But the audience
surprised us." In fact, sales of the band's albums
were steady, but not explosive, until "Speaking in
Tongues" pushed them to the platinum level-
sales of 1 million units-with the single "Burning
Down the House." Then came the concert film,
"Stop Making Sense" (1984), which was a major
art-house success, and the platinum soundtrack,
which packaged many of the band's most popular
songs. While "Little Creatures" (1985) continued
their platinum streak, "True Stories" (1986) has
yet to break the million mark. But it quickly went
gold-sales of 500,000 units-as have "More
Songs About Buildings and Food" (1978), "Fear of

Casual Gods: Harrison
(left foreground) in
rehearsal

4

'The Forest': Byrne
(right) working with
Robert Wilson

12 NEWSWEEKONCAMPUS

MAY 1988

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