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Published: 2006/11/24
by Randy Ray

Jamband Cinema

Dedicated to Benjy Eisen who showed me how to paint the fencewax, on, wax, off and paint in the first person.
This is my inaugural month editing the DVD Review section. I hesitate to state that I am taking over or replacing Benjy Eisen as the lead film guru for the site. One doesnt do either in Eisens iconic case. He is a unique writer who, across the board, has always seemed to gain unanimous approval for his writing skills, passionate dedication and formidable first person articles. Hes also a generous, considerate man as I found out under his tutelage during 2006. My scribe history at can be found at
90% of the topics I cover are artists that I respect. I rarely waste time on non-essential, sub par work; then again, its just my opinion so no doubt, I could be wrongwrongwrong. Therefore, if I sound over-enthused in great detail about a project, think of the resounding silence that surrounds the work I consider deeply flawedgiddy high-fivin coach one moment; cantankerous ogre, the nextthe perfect American split personality at work!
Lets begin with a little cinematic background about what I consider the foundation for any music fan. Next monthin a roundtable of writerswell examine the top music films of 2006DVD, unreleased or otherwise. In January, well begin the year with a monthly roll-out of DVD Reviews from various writers, which hopefully will inform and entertain. I will occasionally write about feature films that are not necessarily music-centric but are vital viewings, as well. Thanks for joining the party.
_Editors note: Please remember, if youd like to lend your voice to the festivities, please email Randy- rmr_company@yahoo.com_
An Even Dozen – The Indispensable Music Films
A Hard Days Night the first archetypal rock n roll film about the first archetypal rock n roll bandsharp and brilliant as the Beatles never sounded so blissfully innocent.
_Elvis 68 _ the Kings televised comeback special is now available in an intoxicating 3-DVD complete version that redefines what it means to be a charismatic rock star.
Woodstock the peak event for the Greatest Generation as all the stars in the Milky Way Galaxy aligned perfectly for a true vision of peaceful communal art in upstate New York.
Gimme Shelter the end of Flower Power and a generations ideals as the first rock n roll bad boy group ends their reign as Satans pawns and become capitalists, instead.
The Harder They Come the definitive rags-to-riches story which helped spawn the glorious reggae revolution of the 1970s and featured Jimmy Cliff.
The Grateful Dead Movie the film where Jerry Garcia got his revenge and gave a fine and weirded-out version of what life would be like if we all just got a bong hit together.
The Last Waltz the 60s consummate with the 70s and the Best Final Gig of All Time directed by Martin Scorsese is the offspring as the Band and a 1,001 stars end an era.
Sex Pistols: The Filth and the Fury the venomous spew is dislodged on an entire self-indulgent generation as the punks completely redefine rock music in less than a year.
Stop Making Sense the landmark film where David Byrne and Talking Heads paint themselves into a corner with a perfect gigwhere do you go from here? You go solo.
Buena Vista Social Club the Havana, Cuba link from the mid-twentieth century to modern Latin music is explored in beautiful and heartbreaking fashion by Wim Wenders.
_PHISH IT _ the surreal imagery dipped into light and shade, stage and tower, amoeba and celestial as the Phab Phour finally got their cinematic due in a festival for the ages.
No Direction Home Martin Scorseses definitive study of Bob Dylans Minnesota origins to his thin wild mercury years, which ended with his 1966 motorcycle accident.

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