Thursday, 9 June 2011

Musical Indulgence.., I Spy for the FBI

No doubt Dear Net Punters, you have read Official and Confidential: The Secret Life of J. Edgar Hoover by Anthony Summers (1993), one of the many books published on that odious little transvestite, who bought the administration of the US justice system into ill-repute for more than a half a century. Summers does an excellent and well-referenced job documenting Hoover's corruption, vindictiveness, peccadilloes and paraphilias (aberrant sexual behaviours).

Being socially progressive on all matters sexual above the age of consent, I wouldn't normally refer to Hoovers sexual predilections, except that he spent a life time documenting the private lives of individuals he sought to destroy.

Incidentally, Mark Felt, one of the FBI's Deputy Directors,turned out to be Woodward and Bernstein's Deep Throat, the secret source which led to the deep sixing of Richard Milhouse Nixon.

There is no better fictional-factual take on Hoover than James Ellroy's American Tabloid, my copy being personally autographed by the bald, troubled chronicleer of LA noir, circa 1950s-1960s. This was a period when the US Mafia operated with total impunity and all cars had tail fins.

And this brings me to Facebook which is now functioning as a Global World Government thanks to that sweaty juvenile Zuckerberg. Watch ABC, PBS, listen to BBC or any other media in the Free World: log on, join our community and give us your feedback. This is a sickening media devepopment and I hope his current pillow book gives him the clap. Hold on, that's a bit extreme.

Facebook does have a couple of redemming qualities and they all relate to its clips of great past music.

The Yardbirds with Jimmy Page doing a killer version of Train Keeps A Rollin' all Night Long from a New Orleans TV show.

The extended version of Hold On, I'm Coming by Sam and Dave backed by Booker T.

The BBCs very early 60s cleverly choreagraphed/mimed treatment of Shaking All Over by Vince Taylor and his Playboys. As good as Jimmy Heath's (Johnny Kidd and the Pirates) original, and probably better than The Who's version, since Pete Townsend just didn't seem to get the hook riff down pat.

I should also include that bleakest of all US country songsTravelling Man by Hanks Willians with the Buster Keaton visuals. It is right up there with Lefty Frizzel's Long Black Veil and Dan Penn/Spooner Oldham's Dark End of the Street. Tales of infidelity, alcohol abuse, travel lust and murder.

Back for my first paragraph. In 1967 US soulster Jamo Thomas wrote and recorded a killer dance track called I Spy for the FBI, and it went on to became a staple in the northern Brit soul scene, which is to say it filled the floor with Mod types shaking their body parts.

And now to the gold.

Smooth soul crooner Luther Ingrams did a cover version of I Spy.... in 1971. Some one took his version of this dance fluff and added a visual backdrop consisting of the history of the Black Panthers and the FBI's COINTELPRO program which was aimed at effectively murdering off the Panther leadership, and uploaded it onto FB.

This is a stark visual collage of that secret program of FBI sanctioned murder, which also includes references to Hoover's predilections and ends with the FBI murder of community organiser Fred Hampton in Oakland.

It is brilliant, creative and almost justifies the existence of Facebook.

Here is the link since I am working with an old pc and blogger is not a crash hot platform.

About 2.30 minutes long and worth your time.

Next step if FB is to develop real social value.

Someone must give The Barracudas The KGB Made a Man out of Me the same collage treatment.

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