Tuesday, November 17, 2009

Test Shoots/Joe Buck

May 16.

Very Exciting beginnings. Today Myke and I did test shoots for the new film I’m making with him, Living the American Nightmare. As we were tuning up the finer points of press releases, we (Myke) got a call from Arturo Vega. I’ve read books on Arturo, seen him in the Ramones documentary End of the Century, and now I will be humbled with an audience with the great Ramone’s art director, and man who has been there and done that with literally everyone. Holyapeshit!

We had an excellent test shoot. Myke talked about the origins of some of his tattoos and more colorful scars. I wanted to feel him out, and see how comfortable he was on camera and answering questions on the spot. What started out as a bit of an anxious shoot, quickly adjusted into a casual on camera conversation. Though it was a test shoot, Myke hit me with both barrels, being brutality deep, honest, and at times boyishly excited to be speaking. Very stress free, almost deceptively easy.

Later we went to a club in Clifton called Dingbatz to meet up with J-Sin Trioxin, who was playing that night with Wednesday 13’s psychobilly side project. Myke lit up when we learned that Joe Buck was performing that night. I'd never heard of him. That changed quick…

Joe was a 46 year old punk/country solo performer with a poorly fashioned rat tail and blonde Mohawk. He sat on his amp and played guitar while singing and pedaling a bass drum. He was lit only by a single red light under his face. No shit when this guy starting down stroking, grinding his teeth and stomping on the drum it grabbed my throat and pushed the button. His stare only was worth the price of admission. He performed more aggressively than 19-20 year olds who are supposedly at their hormonal adolescent peak. Its not just hitting cords, it's about touring the country in a mobile home with your woman and your dog, playing on stage alone, having a bigger stage presence then all the bands on Lallpolooza put together, and being righteously, RIGHTEOUSLY pissed. Fuck yes Joe.

After his show I caught up with him backstage where I put a cheap shit camera in his face and he gave me an interview. We talked about Shakespeare, cops, the farm and human nature. He was the opposite of anyone who sees his show would think. Joe was a complete gentleman, vividly lucid, and was so corporative it was like I was doing HIM a favor. When I turned off the camera he could care less and continued speaking cause this motherfucker had something to say. I helped him carry his equipment to his R.V., he gave me his number so we can do this properly. When I asked if he was on itunes his response was a sheepish “What’s that?”

Joe Buck couldn't be a better foot to get off on.

Thursday, April 9, 2009

The Nightmare Begins......

Spring, 2009

This is PawL speaking, and today my life is over. I'm embarking on a new film called Living the American Nightmare. My mission is to put my spin into the classic punkumentary. My partner, co-producer, and main subject of the film is Myke Hideous. I first heard of him combing the internet looking up line-up changes and band facts on the Misfits (so for me a typical Saturday night) and I came across the ’98 line-up of the Misfits having a singer I’ve never heard of… Myke Hideous.

I looked up pictures of the mysterious 3rd singer of one of my favorite bands, and saw a man who looked like someone buried Michale Graves, dug him up, and put him back on stage (zombie infection and all). Myke has the record for “Misfit with the longest devil lock,” he wore tight black pants, a tattered see threw shirt, and his arms are smeared with tattoos of bugs. Instead of Grave’s skull, he painted his face with dark eyeliner and stitches. He wore custom fangs, making his look vampire-zombie. Digging deeper, I found his band, Empire Hideous. The slow methodical track I downloaded were laced with passion and a chill inducing vocal sample in the intro... the film promtly ended up in a short film (without asking Myke for the rights.

The film we’re doing is about rock stars…REAL rock stars. People who live the life and take chances for the sake of surviving off their art. They are not millionaires and don’t have mansions, yet you can get their music in almost any mall. They are constantly putting out new records, and touring just to make ends meet, all the while fighting conflictions with reality and the demons that allow them to create in the first place. Myke’s book is a bible for anyone up and coming alterna-kid. Anyone who wants to make a living with his or her creativity should be warned by the end of the book the good guy doesn’t get the girl, the hard working band doesn’t score the deal of a life time, and the bad guy doesn’t get his just desserts. The central theme is about how art will always cost the artist no matter what. It comes with the territory most don’t have the stomach for.

The interviews we’re lining up for this are surprising even Myke. My objective is to use Myke’s story to tell the story of all starving artists. I’m also attempting to put together the most complete biography of my beloved Misfits to date. It sounds like bullshit but I hope, I really hope that this is the hardest thing I’ve ever done. I want this to be the starting point of anything I’ll ever have to leave behind. So the American Nightmare begins…