van vliet SINGING INK
poetry and fine arts - 'brown star'
BROWN STAR / KISS ME WHERE I CAIN'T abandoned album 1972
CLEAR SPOT audio exhibit
THIS is part 1 - part 2 - part 3
15 january 1972 captain beefheart and the magic band went on a world wide tour to promote the newly released record 'the spotlight kid'. soon after the start, a 'brown star' in a 'clear spot' in the night sky inspired don van vliet to create a new album he talked about in several interviews from that time:
during the three-weeks break in early march between the north-american part of the tour and the shows in europe the band couldn't explore the fresh tunes: they had to embed their latest asset, bassist roy estrada, into their live act
23, 27 and 28 march 1972 interview BEEFHEART INTERVIEW england 1 february and 1 april 1981 MOONLIGHT DRIVE #1/81 and #2/81
23 march 1972 interview ZAPPA STOLE MY IDEAS, SAYS THE CAPTAIN england 1 april 1972 DISC and music echo
23 march 1972 interview A TRIP INTO THE MIND OF THE SPOTLIGHT KID england 1 april 1972 NEW MUSICAL EXPRESS
when are you going to record your next album 'brown star'?
29 march 1972 interview ROUGH TRADE FROM VENUS HITS IT BIG england 28 april 1972 FRENDZ #26
his next album - 'brown star' - though yet to be recorded, is completely worked out in beefheart's head. it was written during an eight-hour car journey between boston and yale. amongst the numbers to be featured are 'big eyed beans from venus' - 'which says you don't have to go back into the past. all the past in the world doesn't go to make up a man of the present' - and happy blue pumpkin, written by jan van vliet, don's wife and constant companion.
28 and 29 march 1972 interview BEEFHEART'S BOOGIE england 1 may 1972 CREAM vol. 2 #1
but i am a super star. as a matter of fact i'm writing an album called 'brown star'. i have it done now, and it'll be the next one out. it's not avoiding being a super star that i saw 'brown star'. at the end of the poetry or whatever you call it, it says: 'you ask a child if he's seen a brown star around / and he'll laugh and jump up and down and say: / i found a brown star right on the ground'. i think we're living on a brown star. [...] i think this planet is as bright as sirius. but i think it is the 'on the other side of the fence the grass is greener' element that is ruining this paradise.
8 april 1972 interview IK WIL HUILEN ALS EEN WEERWOLF holland 5 may 1972 ALOHA vol.3 #1
does your new elpee resemble 'the spotlight kid' or any earlier record?
when they returned from the european continent an extra usa tour had been arranged, starting a few days later. according to the record company's 'weekly news device' it was supposed to be accompanied by a coloured brochure:
the booklet actually isn't much of a
tour program, but rather an off-topic collection of fine art by don van
vliet.... no wonder it never was distributed at those concerts meant to
buy the 'spotlight kid' album in stead of a future one for which not a
single note had been recorded yet. to that, if the brochure had been
available at the gigs, copies of it regularly would have been offered
for sale over time - but such is an exceptionally rare happening!
ultimately, a few left-overs later were hidden in a number of signed copies of the pre-release promo single 'clear spot' with 'wolfman jack' front....
by the way, given the subject of the 'catalogue' it is no surprise it's printed on brówn paper.
drawing don van vliet february 1972
that only very certain people have found
for years and years they been looking around
a lot of people looking up
but very few of them looking down
well they searched high and low for that little glow
that'll make them happy
some searched fast and they went on past
some went slow but couldn't let it go
i know of a brown star
that only very certain people have found
you can ask a dog why he's so happy
just wagging his tail around
or a frog what makes him jump around
follow a sailing cloud until it dumps
the rain right down
but ask a man and a woman if they've seen
a brown star around
some will say yes and some will say no
some will just laugh and some will just glow
some will say why do you ask
some will say well don't you know
then there'll be the one that says
it's already been found
but you ask a child and they'll just jump up and down
saying we found a brown star
right on the ground
PAGE 2 CAPTAIN BEEFHEART
and lyrics to steal softly thru snow from 'trout mask replica' (1969)