An offshoot of (mim-uh-zeen) and other loss leaders, with an emphasis on my music collection and other things music related.

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Location: Midwest, United States

I'm a pretty varied individual...

Thursday, February 09, 2006

"Remember Me Well" - R.I.P. Bryan Harvey

I just discovered this item, while surfing around today... very rarely am I shocked or surprised by current news items, but this shook me. Fortunately, it seems that they have found the perps, but MY GOD! Very much like IN COLD BLOOD, in terms of the circumstances and how they were found.

House of Freaks may have never broken big into the mainstream, but they always had a tight core of listeners. They were the precursor of bands like The White Stripes and their imitators, but HofF songs seemed to come out the heart of Harvey and percussionist Johnny Hott's experience in growing up in the South, and have a rawness that most of the current two person bands eschew... you didn't hear very many HofF songs on the radio, unfortunately.

I first got introduced to them via MTV, in the grand old days when it did play music, and used to feature bands not in the mainstream spotlight - performing 'Yellow Dog'. MTV used to feature their video "40 Years" from their first album, MONKEY ON A CHAIN GANG, and I went out to find that album.

I picked up all of their work - TANTILLA, the ep ALL MY FRIENDS, and thought that their major label release CAKEWALK (their best album with their best song, "Never") would put them over... that wasn't to be. There remained their last album, INVISIBLE JEWEL and splintering into becoming part of Gutterball, and session work with Cracker.

I was fortunate to see them in '89, after missing them touring with Midnight Oil, doing shows in support of ALL MY FRIENDS - it was a free show at the I-Beam (R.I.P.) in the Haight in S.F. It still remains the best live show I've seen, at least in my experience.

Rhino Records recently reissued their first two albums and ep with bonus tracks and CAKEWALK can usually be found in cut-out bins.

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