Subject: Barry B.
This is Steve Buckingham in Nashville. Our friend, Bob Kirsch, sent me the many statements about Barry Beckett that you posted. I am going to forward all of these to his sons, Mark and Matthew. Diane, his wife, doesn’t do email but I will make sure she gets a copy of all the wonderful things everyone has said about Barry.
Barry had been scheduled to play Wurlitzer and B-3 with me three years ago on a Joan Osborne album I was producing. It was that week that Barry had the first of a series of strokes that he never really recovered from.
Two weeks ago Diane asked Eddie Bayers, Michael Rhodes and me to come see Barry for what we all knew would be the last time. Needless to say, it was very emotional.
I am helping Diane, Mark and Matthew put together a memorial service for Barry. It will be at the Musicians Hall of Fame in Nashville and I will let you know the date so you can post it.
By the way, I have heard from so many people about Barry’s death. Paul Simon called from his tour in New Zealand to offer his condolences. I asked him to call Diane, Barry’s wife of over 43 years, which he did.
Thanks Bob for keeping some of us "in touch."
The following is something I wrote on the night I was told Barry had died.
Eddie Bayers just called me and Barry died about 30 minutes ago. Barry Beckett was one of the greatest studio keyboard players in history and a hell of a guy. If you listened to Rhythm & Blues, Bob Dylan’s "Gotta Serve Somebody," Paul Simon’s "Kodachrome"…and thousands of other records…you’ve heard Barry Beckett.
I first met Barry in 1976 in Muscle Shoals, Alabama when I was still playing sessions and hadn’t yet started producing. Barry and the other members of the Muscle Shoals Rhythm Section…Roger Hawkins, David Hood and Jimmy Johnson…were already legends, having played on records for everyone from Wilson Pickett to the Rolling Stones.
Barry moved to Nashville a few years after I did. The first country artist I produced in Nashville was Tammy Wynette and the first musician I called to play on the session was Barry. I have a great picture of Tammy, Barry and all the other musicians together in the studio. We all look so young…and, sadly, three of those in the photo are no longer with us.
Barry and I worked together a number of times over the following years and even co-produced some artists together. As so many of the other musicians have recalled, the image of Barry holding a cigarette in one hand, elbow on one knee, toothpick in his mouth…staring at the keyboard, waiting to lay just the right 5 or 6 notes in the perfect spot…is indelibly stamped in our memories.
A week ago today, I went to see Barry for the last time with Eddie Bayers and Michael Rhodes. Eddie and Michael played drums and bass on hundreds of Barry’s productions as well as for me. We all consider ourselves lucky to have had him as a mentor…and, especially, a friend.
I will close with this one story. Barry and a group of us studio musicians and producers loved trains. Every year we would charter a steam engine and several cars and go on all day excursions out of Chattanooga. The cars were the old, luxurious types built in the 1930s. The last car on the train had a platform out back and we all wanted to spend time sitting out there, watching the tracks disappear behind us. This is where Barry would park himself for the entire day, except when it was time to eat. One afternoon I was sitting on the back platform with Barry who, typically, had his elbow on one knee and was holding a cigarette…staring at the tracks. Finally he said: "Buck…listen to that rhythm" (He was referring to the clickety-clack of the steel wheels on the rails). Barry continued, "That’s a deep pocket (groove)…let’s remember that the next time we’re in the studio."
Believe me…there are a lot of things I remember about Barry Beckett.
Subject: Re: More Barry Beckett
Barry and Roger Hawkins produced Orleans’ debut LP in 1973.
We were beyond thrilled to be working with them in Muscle Shoals, as young music bucks rapt with what was already a considerable legacy from that srudio and team.
Barry taught us much, as well as joining us on a couple of tracks. We learned a lot and laughed a lot.
The whole LP took 2 weeks – from basic trax to finished mixes on 11 cuts – and remains our hardest-core fan’s favorite album.
We took in more in that 2 weeks about recxording than we’d learned in 20-something years on the planet!
And yeah, we had to stop recording whenever it rained (the tin roof ‘-)
They sent us back to Woodstock with a thick drawl and a lot more wisdom about musix and the biz.
Next time we met up with Barry was in Nashville mid-80s. He was
always the gracious, gentle giant, the quiet genius who touched so many with his understated music and personality.
Only the good die young, indeed.
Subject: Re: Springsteen/Ticketmaster
On Jun 22, 2009, at 5:31 PM, Bob Lefsetz wrote:
"I don’t care if there were seats available on the floor"
Bob, I’m not sure exactly what you’re referring to here (did Landau use this as some sort of explanation?), but just so YOU know, in most of the shows on Bruce’s last two tours, "floor seats" don’t exist…it’s general admission, standing room only on the floor, and if you don’t get in line at the venue hours before the show starts, you are forced to stand at the back…there are barricades preventing one from moving all the way to the front. If you do get into the "right in front of the stage area", you have to endure several hours on your feet.
So, if anyone is indicating that it wasn’t the "best seats" in the house that were held back, they’re dodging the fact that the "better" seats are ones in which you have no seat and must stand for several hours.
Just clarifying for you on that point in case you didn’t know…
John Van Nest
You’re a smart guy—but Springsteen didn’t really change the world in the seventies, although my daughter, gia ciambotti sang with him for a couple of years—great act but not earth shattering. The shit that really counted was happening over the pond. That takes us to headley grange. It’s just a big old english countryside castle-like workhouse—cold as hell, heated by coal, paraffin stove in the kitchen, a hundred rooms, damp and dank—right out of charles dickens. But it must have some musical ghosts haunting the joint because it’s like a vortex for creative, world changing, rock and roll.
Right after led zep recorded their stuff there, my band, clover rented the grange to live in and rehearse. Comming directly from marin, our minds were totally blown by the vibe. The rehearsal hall was a huge ballroom with unreal acoustics. Perfect for loud music.
For some reason or other it was decided that clover would record at rockfield studios in wales instead of doing a remote truck at headley. Rockfield was cool, but didn’t have the danger vibe that headley grange had. Anyway, clover continued to live and rehearse there (and, of course, party), when jake riviera had the brilliant idea to send this guy, d.p. Mc manus, he was thinking of putting on Stiff records, down to headley to have us see whether his shit was worth doing. Well, the vibe at headley must have been in full force that night because we rehearsed the foundations of elvis costello’s first record—and the rest, as they say, is history. To this day, elvis will occasionally tell the story of sleeping that first night in the rehearsal hall and getting up close and personal with the humongus rat population of headley grange. I don’t know whether it’s still being used for the purpose of recording or not, but it ought to be—it’ got some powerful thing going for it.
Dr john p ciambotti
Sent from my Verizon Wireless BlackBerry
From: Amanda Palmer
Subject: twitter power, or "how an indie musician can make $19,000 in 10 hours using twitter"
"how an indie musician can make $19,000 in 10 hours using twitter"
this story has just been blowing people’s minds so i figures i should write it down.
FRIDAY NIGHT LOSERS T-SHIRT, $11,000
about a month ago, i was at home on a friday night (loser that i often am when i’m not touring, i almost never go out) and was, of course, on my mac, shifting between emails, links and occasionally doing some dishes and packing for a trip the next day. just a usual friday-night-rock-star-multi-tasking extravaganza.
i twitter whenever i’m online, i love the way it gives me a direct line of communication with my fans and friends.
i had already seen the power of twitter while touring…using twitter i’d gathered crowds of sometimes 200 fans with a DAY’S notice to come out and meet me in public spaces (parks, mostly) where i would play ukulele, sign, hug, take pictures, eat cake, and generally hang out and connect. this was especially helpful in the cities where we’d been unable to book all-ages gigs and there were crushed teenagers who were really grateful to have a shot at connecting with me & the community of amanda/dolls fans.
i’d also been using twitter to organize ACTUAL last-minute gigs…i twittered a secret gig in LA one morning and about 350 folks showed up 5 hours later at a warehouse space….i played piano, filmed by current.tv, and then (different camera crew) did an interview with afterellen.com.
the important thing to undertsand here is that the fans were never part of the plan..,i basically just INVITED my fans to a press day, the press didnt’ plan it…i did.
i was going to be playing in an empty room and doing q&a with afterellen on a coach with only the camera watching.
it was like….why not tell people and do this in a warehouse instead of a hotel lobby or a blank studio? so i did.
it cost me almost nothing. the fans were psyched.
but back to the bigger, cooler story….
so there i am, alone on friday night and i make a joke on twitter (which goes out to whichever of my 30,000 followers are online):
"i hereby call THE LOSERS OF FRIDAY NIGHT ON THEIR COMPUTERS to ORDER, motherfucker."
9:15 PM May 15th from web
one thing led to another, and the next thing you know there were thousands of us and we’d become the #1 topic trend on twitter.
zoe keating described it as a "virtual flash mob".
the way twitter works (if you don’t have it) is that certain topics can include a hashtag (#) and if a gazillion people start making posts that include that hashtag, the topic will zoom up the charts of what people are currently discussing. it’s a cool feature.
so anyway, there we were, virtually hanging out on twitter on a friday night. very pleased with ourselves for being such a large group, and cracking jokes.
how do you "hang out" on the internet? well, we collectively came up with a list of things that the government should do for us (free government-issued sweatpants, pizza and ponies, no tax on coffee), AND created a t-shirt.
thank god my web guy sean was awake and being a loser with me on friday night because he throw up the webpage WHILE we were having our twitter party and people started ordering the shirts – that i designed in SHARPIE in realtime) and a slogan that someone suggested: "DON’T STAND UP FOR WHAT’S RIGHT, STAY IN FOR WHAT’S WRONG". neil gaiman and wil wheaton joined our party. the fdnas felt super-special.
by the end of the night, we’d sold 200 shirts off the quickie site (paypal only) that sean had set up.
i blogged the whole story the next day and in total, in the matter of a few days, we sold over 400 shirts, for $25/ea.
we ended up grossing OVER $11,000 on the shirts.
my assistant beth had the shirts printed up ASAP and mailed them from her apartment.
total made on twitter in two hours = $11,000.
total made from my huge-ass ben-folds produced-major-label solo album this year = $0
WEBCAST AUCTION, $6000
a few nights after that, i blogged and twittered, announcing a "webcast auction" from my apartment.
it went from 6 pm – 9 pm, my assitant beth sat at my side and kept her eyes on incoming bids and twitter feed.
while we hocked weird goods, i sang songs and answered questions from fans. we wore kimonos and drank wine. it was a blast.
people on twitter who were tuned in re-tweeted to other fans. the word spread that it was a fun place to be and watch.
we had, at peak, about 2000 people watching the webcast.
at the suggestion of a fan early in the webcastm anyone could, on demand, send us $20 via paypal and we would chew,
sign and mail them a postcard. we sold about 70, and we read all those names at the end of the webcast and thanked those
people for supporting us. here’s how the sales broke down:
all the items were signed by moi and hand-packed by beth and kayla._ the items and highest bidders were as follows:_ hilary, ukulele used on the european tour: $640 _jake, "guitar hero" plastic guitar controller used in album promo shoot: $250_ lary b, copy neo2 magazine, plus two post-war trade slap-bracelets & a crime-photo set: $230_ devi, glass dildo, with subtley-sordid backstory: $560 _liz b., "hipsters ruin everything" t-shirt, made by blake (get your very own here!!!!): $155.55_shannon m., my bill bryson book, a short history of neary everything: $280_ nikki, huge metal "the establishment" sign, used at rothbury festival for the circus tent i curated: $450 _j.r., purple velvet "A" dress used in the dresden dolls coin-operated boy video shoot: $400_ jessie & alan: who killed amanda palmer vinyl: $100_ nikki: wine bottle, auctioned BY REQUEST!!! $320 _shannon w., torn-to-shit vintage stockings used in the who killed amanda palmer/ michael pope video series: $200 _jodi, school-note-book break-up letter, written to amanda from jonas woolverton in 7th grade (i still haven’t emailed him about that….): $250_ daryl, ANOTHER wine bottle, by request, that we had LYING AROUND: $320
reto emailed, having barely missed the wine bottle, and asked us to send him "something funny" for $129.99. we sent a heath ledger statuette.
total made on twitter in 3 hours, including the postcards, was over $6000.
again, total made on my major-label solo album this year: $0
TWITTER DONATION-ONLY GIG, $1800
a few days later, i twittered a guest-list only event in a recording studio in boston, to take place a week later.
the gig lasted about 5 hours, all told, with soundcheck and signing. i took mostly requests and we had a grand old time.
first come, first served. the first 200 people to ask got in, for free. i asked for donations and made about $2200 in cash.
i gave $400 back to the studio for the space and the help. we sold some weird merch. i think we should call it an even 2k.
total made at last-minute secret twitter gig, in about 5 hours = $2000
major-label record blah blah blah = $0
…..and for fun, and to thank my fans for being awesome, i’ve been doing some twitter perfomance art, including answering their questions by magic-markering my body until it’s covered, and displaying time-lapse make-up application advice….but that’s another story.
TOTAL MADE THIS MONTH USING TWITTER = $19,000
TOTAL MADE FROM 30,000 RECORD SALES = ABSOLUTELY NOTHING.
turn on, tune in, get dropped!!!!!
amanda fucking palmer
if you want to read the full blogs and see the pictures from the #LOFNOTC events, i blogged here:
1. the friday night that started it all:
2. the webcast and magic-marker/make-up mayhem: