Sunday, July 5, 2009

Blue Cheer--first speed metal hair band?

Another hot day coming up. I'm not going to tax your poor tired brains with anything difficult. Instead, we're going to go LOUD. But first, an aside about Kelley's stepfather, Arthur Woodbury.

Art is a musician. He was the first person, I think, to use the Stanford mainframe to compose. He was one of the first people to work on artificial intelligence there. He edited the first incarnation of Source magazine. He taught at the University of South Florida for more than twenty years. (Now he lives up the street.) But for our purposes today, all you need to know is that he played, briefly, with Blue Cheer in the early days.

Until two days ago, I had a vague notion that Blue Cheer hung out at the Fillmore, dropped acid, and played Big Brother & the Holding Company type hippie music. Ha! Wrong wrong wrong. Two days ago, FoAN Pierce, put up four YouTube videos of music for hot summer days on his blog (all fab--go look), one of which was Blue Cheer doing "Summertime Blues":

It completely did my head in: Blue Cheer were the first speed metal hair band! Whoa! (Okay, Status Quo maybe--maybe--were first but Blue Cheer, wow, just listen to them. Judas Priest, Metallica...all those people wouldn't exist without this sound.)

So, hey, watch it again, and this time turn it up to eleven.

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