John Phillips - Andy Warhol Presents: Man on the Moon
The particulars and events that lead up to John Phillips disastrous space opera seem almost too insanely Hollywood to be true. Phillips, post Mamas and the Papas was inspired by the Apollo 11 moon
landing and set out to write an epic mythological play about a humanoid bomb, left on the moon that threatens to destroy the universe (naturally). With the part of the heroic astronaut originally intended for Elvis, the part of an off-key singing alien written for his naturally off-key singing wife Genevieve, discussion of a movie version to star Jack Nicholson, the involvement of Andy Warhol, a troupe of pop n' locking dancers from Soul-Trane and accusations that George Lucas stole the premise of Star Wars from an early version of its script, it all seems... a little much. But it would seem that Phillips remained dedicated to the project for over five years and with his efforts it did finally open to a celebrity audience but closed in only five days. The failure of the project drove John deeper into drug addiction but eventually some of the work would get parlayed into his role in the similarly themed "The Man Who Fell To Earth". Ah but what about the music you ask, well its not at all without its merits. Overlooking some of the rather obsessively space-themed lyrical content, there are some great tunes that echo Phillips' early solo work and his themes of misunderstood loneliness. There are also a few songs that seem like the heaviest dose wouldn't make you understand what's going on (i.e. "Wee Funky Little Bats") but maybe it had to be seen to be understood. Nonetheless this remains a very interesting look into a man's tireless work. The CD also includes two videos of early rehearsal footage that do little to clear things up but give a nice glimpse into the production.

[MP3] John Phillips - Andy's Talkin' Blues
[MP3] John Phillips - Yesterday I Left the Earth

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posted by dissensous at 9:15:00 AM


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