MORE TALES FROM THE SKETCHBOOK DEPT…There are certain things
people like us (and if you are digging MONSTERHEAD, you know who I’m talking
about) remember seeing for the first time and the visceral impression it left on
our brains. For me that would include my brother giving me his copy of FAMOUS
MONSTERS of FILMLAND when I was about 5. Another item that jolted me
permanently was ZAP #3 with the amazing story of Captain Pissgums by S. Clay
Wilson. I loved Crumb of course but something about Wilson’s stories and art
really overwhelmed me in a good way. I was working in a record store/head
shop called Dirt Cheap in Lincoln, Nebraska in 1970 when I discovered ZAPS
and soon found out that WIlson had actually grown up in Lincoln, before moving
to Lawrence KS and then San Francisco about a decade earlier. Flash forward
to 1982, NYC and a bar in Greenwich Village. The man himself was in town for
a gallery show of his twisted artwork. I was writing for a magazine called STOP!
(in fact, that was where the Spare Parts column was born in 1981) and a crew of
the staff met Wilson at some bar to interview him for that mag. I surprised him by
knowing some obscure details about his life in Lincoln and when I shared the fact
I was a fellow Cornhusker, I became “homie Dale”. The interview was great with
all of us getting drunker as the tape rolled, the show was amazing and well
attended and Wilson went home to S.F. to continue his work as one of the best
UG cartoonists to weild a pen.
I stayed in touch with him through the years and after moving to New Orleans in
the early 90s, was pleased to welcome him as a house guest during Mardi Gras
in 2000. My friend Caesar Meadows (check out jigsawjct.com to see some of
Caesar’s comical creations) and I picked him up at the N.O. airport and he was
dressed in checkered deck shoes and a black and white checkered shirt, in
honor of his most infamous creation the Checkered Demon. We ended up
having a party at my house later that evening and Wilson got pretty drunk and
obnoxious. It made me nervous but the next day my pals told me that they felt
honored to have received salty insults from Wilson. I had a broken leg at the
time but Roy Elliot, a long time pal of Wilson’s from Houston drove in to hang for
the week and served as what Wilson dubbed our “wheel man”. The night before
he flew home, Wilson hunkered down with my sketchbook and came up with this
little gem of eye candy:
Wilson still lives and draws at his home in S.F. but suffered some brain damage
from a fall several years ago. His wife Lorraine Chamberlain has been there for
him throughout this ordeal, and likely saved his artwork and his home being
ransacked by vultures during his almost year long stay in a hospital To learn
more about this situation visit: sclaywilsontrust.com and donate a few bucks if
you feel so inclined. Also be on the lookout next year for a two volume set on
Wilson’s art and life, written by Patrick Rosencranz, author of REBEL VISIONSUNDERGROUND COMIX; THE ARTIST HIMSELF: A RAND HOLMES
TALES FROM THE SKETCH BOOK DEPT…On July 11th, 1976, while living in Hollywood CA, I bought a sketchbook. It’s the size of a high school yearbook. When I bought it, I was a 24 year old transplanted Nebraskan following some elusive California dream. And I was working the swing shift at an Adult Book Store in Pasadena owned by my friend Ed. So the first 30 pages or so of my book are sketches I did at work, many influenced by the walls of hard core smut surrounding me. Then, like many new toys, I put the book away for a few years. When I moved to NYC in 1979 I was fortunate to meet lots of very talented cartoonists, such as Drew Friendman, Peter Bagge, Kaz, John Holmstrom, Ken Weiner (aka Avidor), Bruce Carleton, J.D. King, David Coulson and more. I started asking them to draw in the book and they happily obliged. I started taking the book on my travels and today the sucker is chock full of some fanfuckingtastic drawings.
This will mark the first in a series of “tales from the sketchbook”–I’ll share a drawing, the story that goes with it and tell you more about the featured artist. Let’s kick it off with this lovely sketch by Wayno——
In July of 1998 I drove from New Orleans to a crazy place called Brushwood in Sherwood, New York to celebrate the first X-Day. X-Day was organized by the Church of the SubGenius and was SUPPOSED to be the day the X-ists came to earth and loaded up all us good subgenii to vamoose before the earth exploded. The right and holy Reverend Ivan Stang pulled up in a spotless white stretch limo the morning of the long awaited rapture. About one hundred faithful followers of Bob Dobbs anxiously held their collective breath to hear the update on the ETA of the spaceships. After some hemming, hawing and typical Stang double talk, he revealed that the prophecy was a bit gummed up…the year 1998 was printed upside down in the holy book and the aliens weren’t due until July of 8661.
An angry mob threw Stang into the muddy pond 50 yards east of the pulpit and the party raged on.
Wayno has a very cool blogspot where he shares the genesis of cartoons he sells to BIZARRO creator Dan Piraro. Check out his archives at the site below:
UNSUNG HEROES DEPT….My old pal Pat Moriarity is one heckuva an artist and one of the busiest as well. He does comics, CD covers, concert posters, free lance illustration, animation and he even is helping design a new video game. He recently sent me current copies of MINESHAFT and here is his story of it’s origins:
Here’s a groovy portrait of Elvis in outer space Pat did for an art show that featured artwork about the King of Rock.
When you visit Pat’s website don’t forget to load a bowl and drift away to his beautiful animated stories about Red Wing Boots, Charlie Burton story about Buddy Miles and his luverly animated reverie from the astounding documentary RAILROADED (the story of the crazed but inspire WILD MAN FISHER). SPARE PARTS CONTEST #1 DEPT….Anyone want to win a DVD copy of ZOMBIE VS. MARDI GRAS, the rotting corpse opus made years ago by Will Frank, Mike Lyddon and Karl Demolay. Well, you can and it’s very simple. Just submit a drawing of Adolf Hitler torturing Donald Trump to me at email@example.com or mail your art to me at 67 Romaine Lane, Glenwood AR 71943. Contest ends when I get at least three entries so that may take years. I will publish the winning art in a future column as well as any submissions that don’t suck raw ass. So get to the easel Sparts fans and let’s piss off the Donald with some groovy artwork. To check out more art and Pat Moriarity propaganda visit these websites:
(Pat’s websites are at the bottom of this page)
Until next we meet stay regular and bite those bedbugs, bubbas and bubbettes.
Home Page: http://www.patmoriarity.com
ARKANSAS TRAVELER DEPT…While in NYC a few weeks back I gathered with a bunch of old buddies at Handsome Dick Manitoba’s juke joint on 6th and Avenue B. Handsome Dick was the lead singer for the legendary NYC punk pioneers The Dictators. He has a band now with the clever name of MANITOBA and was knocking em dead in Madrid Spain the night of my get together. Among the fine folks present was Ron Kellum, a chap I met in 1983 while working as a secretary to two women A & R executives at RCA Records. Ron was in the Design Dept. and created some fantastic album covers. One afternoon I stopped by his office to go get some dogs at Nathan’s on Times Square and saw a bunch of old RCA cover art lying in a corner. Among the beauties was the original artwork for an old Spike Jones LP called “Thank You Music Lovers” The artist? None other than good ol’ boy Jack Davis! Man, did I want to “borrow” that item.
Ron gave me a copy of his band THE MOTO-GATORS CD and in a word it is SMOKING!
Find out more about the MOTO-GATORS @: http://www.facebook.com/motogators and
http://www.myspace.com/themotogators You can download the CD from:
http://www.cdbaby.com/cd/themotogators Ron was actually responsible for my move to New Orleans in 1990. A native of Little Rock, AR. Ron was always urging me to check out the Jazz Fest in New Orleans. I finally got down to that wild party in 1998 and loved the big sleazy so much I moved in two years later. Ron also turned me on to the exquisite vibe of THE RADIATORS when they played a small club called TRAMPS around 1986. Thank you Ron for both those acts of good will.
Next parts I’ll be laying down updates on some of the other cats and kittens who were getting loaded with me at Manitoba’s including Ramones cover artist extroardinaire and founder of PUNK MAGAZINE John Holmstrom, world’s biggest asshole Mykel Board, former SCREW Art Director Kevin Hein, drunken leprehcan Gianluca Tromontana, world traveler and artist Haley Lou Haden, Laughing Sky guitarist and lead vocalist Dino Sorbello and a tribute to the gorgeous bartender Miss Vickie. Bring your own acid, Sparts lovers.
HIDE THE DRUGS DEPT….Hey gang if you’re in New Orleans on Monday October 29th, come see my country cuzzin Princess Partygirl DJ at Tallulah’s Pornopticon Party. The Princess will be playing nothing but dance hits (“I don’t spin ballads, they bore me,” she often purrs while hitting her favorite crack pipe.) One word of warning—do not, I repeat do not, loan my cousin money. She will not pay you back and she will use it buy drugs….that’s what she does. So if she tries to wheedle some spare change, give it to her only if don’t plan to ever see it again. She also plans to teach the revelers over 20 dances we used to jive to at the Teen Canteen’s and Nine High dances in Lincoln, Nebraska back in the late 60s. The Princess just returned from a short stay in the Women’s Correctional Center in Kalazmazoo Michigan…where she earned lots of moolah selling sexual favors to the staff and inmates. So she will actually have some $$$ to give me in case I need to bail her out Orleans Parish Prison before the soiree wraps up. Be there or be square, cats and kittens. My cousin Princess Partygirl, looking very demure in a mug shot taken by the Morgantown City Constable last week when she was detained for selling marijuana to high school kids at the local malt shop. She is presently a guest in their county prison, but assures me that she will be released in time to DJ on Monday the 29th of October.
MULTIPLE ORGASMS DEPT…My fellow Sub Genii Byron W. knows I love fucking squids and sent me info about this very affordable vacation package. What say we all meet there on 12/12/12 and celebrate the Mayan Calendar meltdown in true squid fucking style.
PRINCESS PARTYGIRL GOES RURAL DEPT… My cousin Princess Partygirl scored a gig spinning platters at my friend Mary Go Round’s annual CARNIVAL in Glover, VT. She will be teaching the assembled celebrants over 25 dances (including the Frug, the Watusi, the Hully Gully, the Wooly Booly, the Alligator, the Swim, the Hitchhiker, the Felch, etc.) that we shimmied down on during our teenage years. My pal Joe Powers and I are also on the bill for tonight playing some groovy music on guitar, bongos and harmonica. So book those private jets right now and I’ll see you in the woods tonight…many photos to follow soon.
NEKKID GAL DEPT…Check out the naughty, naked lady tantalizing the uptight John in this painting I bought from Robert Williams in 1988. I met Robert through my friend Glenn Bray and was lucky enough to get a painting from him at a very good price. He had just wrapped up a gallery show in L.A. and had a few paintings that hadn’t sold. This canvas was part of Robert’s ZOMBIE MYSTERY PAINTINGS series. He gave all these paintings three titles. Here are the monikers he bestowed on this little beauty:
1) The Monitor Headed Jet Pimp And An Irate Sugar Daddy Split Hairs Over A Hot Commodity.
2) A Gentleman Of Great Social Conscience Is Tormented By The Market Value Of Love.
3) The Garnisheed Heart
Robert continues to create incredible work and is truly deserving of his nickname “the demon with a paintbrush.”
Next Spare Parts I’ll be examining the art of a true unsung hero of modern cartooning–Pat Moriarity. You will LOVE his stuff, which includes three very tasty animations. See y’all there or y’all be square, Sparts fans.
Looks like a good read, eh SPARTS fans? I “borrowed” this book from the offices of SCREW MAGAZINE in the early 80s when I used to sell articles to editor Manny Neuhaus. The editorial offices were on the 8th floor of an office building on 14th Street and hanging out there was a pleasure (as long as founder and publisher Al Goldstein didn’t make one of his rare visits to that floor). For generic porn, this book is HOT. Especially if you happen to have a fetish for nuns having sex with German Shephards. Two years ago I loaned this book to Julien Nitzberg (see Spare Parts #1) who loaned it to Johnny Knoxville, who turned it into a T-Shirt cuz he has millions of bucks and owns a T-Shirt making thingy-ma-bob. I don’t wear the T-Shirt in public that often as it tends to offend women, nuns and Catholics. German Shephards love it though.
Be here for my next column where I’ll share my story of meeting Johnny Knoxville and introducing him to fine art of ball walking. Until then, remember–hugs and drugs.
TAKE A PICTURE, IT LASTS LONGER DEPT…. Ahoy maties! This marks the debut of “Spare Part’s Scrapbook Stories”. After five years of bucolic living at my cozy, woodsy hillbilly heaven in Arkansas, I’m finally unpacking (I’m a lazy sod) more of the countless boxes of crap I hauled up here from New Orleans in 2007. I recently unearthed a ton of photos and future columns will occasionally feature stories based on those pix.
Back in 2004, I had the opportunity to “act” in a made for TV movie called DEAN KOONTZ’ FRANKENSTEIN (I always thought Mary Shelley wrote that book). I’ve done lots of extra work in my life and it is almost as boring as being a security guard (I’ve had that gig, too). Extra work involves hours of sitting around waiting to be in a shot for a few minutes, stuffing yourself with food from the craft services tables and rarely getting to see yourself on screen in the finished product. I’ve worked as a piece of meat, I mean “extra” on probably 30 films and spotted myself on camera once. I always took something to read and a deck of cards. However, on this movie I was actually going to be onscreen. I played a security guard whose heart had been torn out by the Frankenstein monster. I first show up on camera croaked in front of a bookcase where Parker Posey and Adam Goldberg examine my bloody corpse. The make up artist was very cool. He had the prosthetic chest wound ready when I checked in that morning and it only took him about 20 minutes to get me ready for the scene. Then, it was hurry up and wait time. I cramped up several times as I had to lean against the bookcase in an awkward death pose. As the director, Marcus Nispel, had his assistant pepper me with more fake blood from his bucket, I saw one of my favorite actors enter the room–Michael Madsen. This was the last day of shooting and apparently Mr. Madsen was ready to wrap it up and call it a day. Later on, I heard some rumors of inebriation on Madsen’s part and he did seem a bit lit up as he stared at me with his trademark shit eating grin. After a long hard stare, he walked up to me and said “You look fabulous” then was off to wardrobe. Parker Posey was very nice and she had to lean in close to my wounds to do her lines with Goldberg over and over. After the sequence was finished, I retreated to an extra’s holding pen and grabbed a Snicker and a Dr. Pepper. As about 5 of us were shooting the breeze, waiting for Godot, Michael Madsen came back to check us out. He surveyed us with a slow sweeping gaze and then shared these words of wisdom: “Acting…it’s not all what it’s cracked up to be, huh?” He then exited, stage left, to fuck with somebody else’s head before he was needed for a shot. My biggest clue to the animosity between Madsen and the director was after the lunch break when Nispel announced (in his German accent): “I’ve got gut news people. Mr. Madsen’s part has wrapped and he’s gone home…we should be able to get some work done now.” That this statement was met with applause lead me think the crew wouldn’t miss Madsen either. I sure did, but my vote didn’t count. Anyway it was time for my second bit on screen. I was laid out on a stainless steel gurney in a very creepy looking morgue set. My acting challenge here was to stay awake while lying on a cold steel bed clad only in my skivvies and a sheet for close to two hours. I snore like Fred Flintstone so whenever I would nod off, my trumpeting would rouse Parker Posey to shake me and whisper, “Dale, wake up.” What a trooper. When the scene was over, Marcus Nispel thanked me for my patience and urged the crew to give me a nice round of applause. If they gave out Emmys for “Best Performance as a Corpse” I think I would have at least earned a nomination. After a long but rewarding day, I was stoked to realize that I would be able to see myself in the finished film. Too bad it was a dud. Months later I was about to fly to St. Marteen’s to deal a poker tournament. I subscribed to TV GUIDE at the time but hadn’t looked through the past few issues. So I grabbed three issues to read on the plane. As we started our descent into St. Maarten, I thumbed through the glossy features section in one issue and was floored. There was a full page piece on the upcoming premier of D.K.s FRANKENSTEIN and they used a photo of me on the gurney to illustrate the article. What really blew me away was that had I not grabbed that TV GUIDE to read, I might never have seen my pose as a naked, corpse in TV GUIDE. Here’s the photo—excuse my enormous belly. I was 8 months pregnant at the time.
HILLBILLY HEAVEN DEPT…Five years ago I moved from New Orleans to Glenwood, Arkansas. Many of my friends wondered what lead me to that decision. I would explain to them that after living in large cities my whole life (including Hollywood, New York City and 17 years in New Orleans) I was ready for the country. Even before Katrina came and bitch slapped the Gulf Coast, I was pondering a move to Ashville N.C. Then I found out the prices of homes there and put that idea on hold. In 2007, my pals Valerie and Brian were going to drive up to Arkansas to check out places to move themselves. They knew of my desire to escape the city grind and invited me along. Their first stop was in Glenwood where they had an appointment with Landman Dan who showed us plots he was selling on two mountains he owned. While we were waiting for Dan to show up, I walked into a store located at 201 E. Broadway on Glenwood’s main downtown stretch. The store is called BILLY’s HOUSE OF GUITARS AND MUSICAL MUSEUM and after meeting the owner, Billy Herrell, and talking to him for about an hour, I knew I wanted to move as close to his store as possible. So I bought a sweet little pad about 2 miles away on 4 acres of woods. The Caddo River flows through downtown Glenwood and I swim there almost every day in the summer. I’m living in a dry county, so I’ve cut down on my boozing considerably. But Billy’s store is the promised land. We are into to all the same neat stuff–rock n’ roll, monsters, the Beatles, old movies, comic books, dinosaurs, etc. In the window of his store, Billy has a sign that reads “Cool Stuff Inside”. He ain’t lying. He has the stagecoach from the Roy Rogers T.V. show, a vintage jukebox that plays 78rpm discs (I bought a 1970s era jukebox from him when I moved there and he included all the great, rare 45s it was stocked with as part of the deal!), an amazing collection of autographed 8x10s of everyone from Marty Allen to Bela Lugosi to Johnny Cash and of course, some super duper vintage instruments. Billy operates differently from music dealers located in major towns. If he gets a choice guitar at a really good price he doesn’t mark it up to it’s book value, he just adds enough to make a fair profit. Which means you might see a guitar with a book value of 2 grand selling for 400 bucks if Billy got a deal it on it himself. He likes to pass on the savings. The store is huge if you haven’t guessed and includes a stage where Billy hosts the monthly “Front Porch Pickin’” show. He is joined by fantastic area musicians and all kinds of special guests. He recently had a 18 month old youngster sing “Bad to the Bone” and it brought the house down. Friend Billy on FaceBook by typing in Billy’s House of Guitars and you can access archives of the Front Porch shows plus watch a video of little Zaden doing his George Thorogood impression.
GIVE ME SOME MEN WHO ARE STOUT HEARTED MEN DEPT…Brah, they don’t come much more stout hearted than my ol’ pal William Stout who lives in bucolic Pasadena, CA. I met Bill while I was living in Hollywood in 1976, struggling to succeed as a standup comedian. I lived in a studio apartment at 1776 N. Sycamore (Lester Chambers of THE CHAMBERS BROTHERS BAND was my neighbor and my rent was a whopping $125/month). Directly across the street was a beautiful old building called The Players Club, an organization for actors and show biz folks. Once a month a comic swap meet was held in the auditorium of the club, so I strolled in one sunny Saturday afternoon to check out the funny books. As I walked towards the stage I encountered a tall, young man selling full color posters that were slightly larger than a record album cover. Upon closer inspection, I saw that the posters were for a bootleg LP called TALES FROM THE WHO. The artist himself, Bill Stout, was there selling and signing these at a price of about $3 each. I was completely stoked as Bill was (and still is) one of my favorite artists. The album was supposed to grace the cover of a bootleg LP made by a company called Trademark of Quality, whose logo was a rubber stamp of a pig surrounded by the words (what else?) ”trademark of quality”. Their early releases had no artwork, only the name of the band rubber stamped on the cover along with the ToQ logo. As they started to make tons of money from their prolific output of illegal product, someone decided to hire Bill Stout to create covers for the bootlegs. He drew some beauties and the gimmick was to depict the band or musician featured on the vinyl as pigs. I still have one with Pete Townsend in boilersuit & Doc Martens, leaping in the air with his Gibson SG and looking very cool with his pig snout and ears. My favorite was of John Lennon and Yoko Ono in the naked TWO VIRGINS LP cover pose, only with cute widdle piggy snouts and wiggly piggy tails. The TALES OF THE WHO cover was a masterpiece, drawn to look like an old EC Horror comic from the 50s. (I still have my copy and will eventually scan it so I can share it with you loyal readers in a future column.) Bill told me he was selling the covers without the bootleg LP to go with it because ToQ had recently been raided by the FBI and he had several boxes of covers to distribute however he saw fit. Thus he was selling them to us fanboys at the local comic swap meet. I told Bill how much I loved his comics, especially his story for BICENTENNIAL GROSSOUTS (which sports an incredible Stout cover of a rotting, zombified Uncle Sam holding a boil covered baby pulled fresh from the womb, also drawn to resemble an EC Horror comic) called “Realityland” based on Disneyland, where Bill worked as a portrait artist years earlier. As I got ready to go home, I asked him if he would draw a portrait of me as Guru Roody Toot Kazoody, one of my comedy routine characters. He said yes so I met him in his studio a few days later, which he shared with the late, great Dave Stevens, creator of THE ROCKETEER. Bill blew me away with the finished product and only charged me $10 for the original artwork, a gift really. We’ve been friends ever since and through the years I’ve acquired four pieces of his mind blowing dinosaur artwork (my favorite being his touching rendition of a Brontosaurus taking a dump) plus numerous copies of his various sketchbooks. Go to his website: williamstout.com and scorch your orbs on his fantastic artwork. If you’d like an autographed 8 x 10 of
of the Rudy Toot Kazoody portrait, send $3 to me at 67 Romaine Lane, Glenwood, Arkansas 71943 and I’ll have the greasy guru send one your way plus a rare issue of the one page, one shot fanzine THE GUROCK TIMES. My friend David Weinberg produced a radio spot on a visit he, Julien Nitzberg (see Spare Parts #1) and I made to Bill’s studio in Pasadena about three weeks ago and you can check it out at: randomtape.com Look for the piece entitled Portraiture. That’s all for now sparts fans, but until we meet again stay regular.
Greetings gates, let’s percolate. Welcome back to the new, improved Spare Parts column. Many of you will be familiar with this pile of plugs from it’s origin in STOP! Magazine back in 1983 or it’s long run in Michael Weldon’s fine PSYCHOTRONIC VIDEO MAGAZINE for over ten years. Huge thanks and gratitude to Will Frank for his invitation to revive S.P. for his amazing MONSTER HEAD website. But enough chit chat, on with the plugs….SHUT UP AND DEAL DEPT. I just wrapped up my fourth summer dealing poker at the WSOP in the lovely RIO HOTEL in hotter than hell Las Vegas (a full 8 days of temps over 114 degrees!). As usual, I met some very cool folks at this gig, dealt some incredible bad beats to the players and actually got to visit a swing party a couple of times hosted by the vivacious team of Andy and Charlet. (more about that experience in a future missive). The WSOP lasts 7 weeks and when it wraps up I usually visit a bunch of pals in Los Angeles. My favorite pal to visit in L.A. resides in Echo Park and is one talented mofo, I tell you. His name is Julien Nitzberg and he has directed documentaries on Hasil Adkins (The Wild World of Hasil Adkins, One Man Band and Inventor of the Hunch), produced DANCING OUTLAW, the jaw dropping saga of Jesco White, the glue huffing tap dancer and recently released the Johnny Knoxville produced THE WILD AND WONDERFUL WHITE FAMILY OF WEST VIRGINIA (Julien digs looong titles; see the movie at
http://wildandwonderfulwhites.com/) All of these films can be seen on the net with a little bit of searching and each is worth searching for, believe me. Julien sent me an intriguing email last week: “Derkie White made a sequel to Wild and Wonderful Whites and it’s a little explicit”– http://www.xtube.com/watch.php?v=FKR6R-S356- (you must prove to me you’re over 18 to visit this site…haw). Big thanks to Julien for continuing his never ending project to treat my pallet to brand new taste sensations among the millions of LA area restaraunts. Highlights this trip included a Burmese joint in Culver City, the best pizza parlor on the planet in downtown L.A. and a Vietnamese/Mexican fusion eatery. Tune in to a future column where I will share the names and locations of these fine establishments. That wraps up my re-entry into the world of Spare Parts and once again, thanks Will for providing this forum. Anyone who wants to send me cool stuff can mail it to me here: Dale Ashmun, 67 Romaine Lane, Glenwood AR 71943. Even if I don’t like what you send, I’ll find something nice to say about it. However, if you’re reading this or have followed the column in the past, “ooh baby, you know what I like.”