Monthly Archives: April 2020

RIP André Stordeur (1941 – 2020)

André Stordeur was a Belgian musician.

To be honest, I’d never heard of Stordeur.

He did the soundtrack to Office Baroque (1977) but that’s not on YouTube.

Sub Rosa compilation of the work of Stordeur

There is, however, a fine selection of his recordings by Sub Rosa Records on YouTube.

Once again it is clear that electronic popular music (Telex) and electronic art music (Stordeur) are miles apart. That there is no overlap in audience nor in historiography between the likes of art music electronic music practitioners such as Stordeur and counterparts such as Telex who work in the popular idiom.

RIP Onaje Allan Gumbs (1949 – 2020)

Onaje Allan Gumbs was an American pianist, best-known for having played with the fine fleur of American jazz.

 Genesis (1974)


As I prefer all roads to lead to Rome, and Rome is my book, the death of Onaje Allan Gumbs must inevitably lead to Strata-East Records, more specifically to Charles Sullivan’s album Genesis (1974) on which mister Gumbs played piano.

RIP Hal Willner (1956 – 2020)

Hal Willner was an American music producer and facilitator.

In my book Willner is primarily noted for his album Dead City Radio (1990), a spoken word album of William S. Burroughs recitations.

 Words of Advice: William S. Burroughs on the Road (2007) the interview with Willner on the making of Dead City Radio is at 1:07:40 and the recording of of a “Thanksgiving Prayer” is at 1:11:23.

I cannot remember if it was Gus Van Sant’s video “A Thanksgiving Prayer” (1991) or his film Drugstore Cowboy (1989) which visually introduced me to Burroughs.

Today, I learn that “A Thanksgiving Prayer” was a promotional video to Dead City Radio.

In the documentary Words of Advice: William S. Burroughs on the Road (2007) there is an interview with Willner on the making of Dead City Radio at 1:07:40 and the recording of of a “Thanksgiving Prayer” is at 1:11:23, sadly without the Gus Van Sant footage.

RIP Allen Garfield (1939 – 2020)

Allen Garfield was an American actor.

Garfield at 2:52

In my book he is noted for playing a smut peddler in no less than two early Brian De Palma films: Greetings (1968) and Hi Mom! (1968).

In Greetings Garfield praises the imaginary book The Horney Headmaster by Richard P. Long (“beautiful book, tremendous insights!”) to Robert de Niro.

In The Conversation, that masterpiece of paranoia, he is the one to describe Hackman as “the best bugger on the West Coast.”

The true jewel of the three films I mention here, is the film Hi Mom! for its ‘black experience’ episode (but to be honest, Garfield is not in that segment).

Trailer to Cry Uncle!, Garfield is throughout

While researching this death, I stumble upon Cry Uncle! (1971), judging from the trailer, I gather this is an amusing film.

Au revoir John. I suspect you were lots of fun.

RIP Honor Blackman (1925 – 2020)

Honor Blackman was an English actress, known for her sex symbol-ish parts in popular pulp of the sixties (The AvengersGoldfinger and Jason and the Argonauts).

The Cat and the Canary (1978)

Radley Metzger cast her as Susan Sills (“the big game hunter, one of the world’s most efficient killers”) in The Cat and the Canary (1978).

“Men Will Deceive You” (1964), a version of Gainsbourg’s “La javanaise.”

She recorded the surprise hit “Kinky Boots” (1964) and the album Everything I’ve Got (1964) which featured an interpretation of Serge Gainsbourg’s “La Javanaise”.

RIP Pentti Linkola (1932 – 2020)

Pentti Linkola was a Finnish academic and radical ecology-activist.

So radical that in the Anglosphere he is known as an ecofascist.

Itke rakastettu maa (Cry, Beloved (Land), 1988)

He first came to the attention outside of Finland when Dana Milbank interviewed him for the WSJ.

That article was “In His Solitude” (1994), and it cited him as saying:

“We still have a chance to be cruel. But if we are not cruel today, all is lost.”

What exactly does he mean by being cruel?:

“End Third World aid and asylum for refugees, so millions die. Try mandatory abortions for those with two children. And then find some way to get rid of the extra billions of people. With 2.5 times more humans than earth can support, another world war, he says, would be ‘a happy occasion for the planet.’ Living alone in primitive style here without running water or car, the fisherman likes to compare humanity to a sinking ship with 100 passengers and a lifeboat that can only hold 10. ‘Those who hate life try to pull more people on board and drown everybody. Those who love and respect life use axes to chop off the extra hands hanging on the gunwale.'”

“In His Solitude” (1994)

Next to this there is “Humanflood”, a four-page text of his hand featured in Apocalypse Culture II (2000) which I have been unable to identify.

And then there is his book Can Life Prevail? (2011), a translation of Voisiko elämä voittaa (2004), is still in print.

The metaphor of the lifeboat [above] was probably taken from the 1974 essay “Living on a Lifeboat” by Garrett Hardin, an essay which was the basis for what has become known as lifeboat ethics.

RIP Patrick Gibson (? – 2020)

Patrick Gibson (ne Francfort) was French musician. He was the drummer of the Gibson Brothers.

Cuba” (1978)

Their disco was not my type of disco … but hey … as I often say … you can’t argue with popular.

To his credit, Patrick seemed to have played the drums on the recently deceased Manu Dibango album Manu 76 (1976).

Patrick was in his sixties. Seeing recent photos of the trio seems to confirm that covid and obesity are bad company.

The Gibson Brothers were managed by Jean Kluger (born 1937) and Daniel Vangarde (born 1947). Vangarde’s real name is Bangalter and he is the father of Thomas.

RIP Sergio Rossi (1935 – 2020)

Sergio Rossi was an Italian shoe designer.

I discovered his work by finding a page dedicated to misogynistic advertising.

Here is the image I discovered, white stockings, white shoes, only the legs are visible, in a Mondriaan-like framework.[1]

Disembodied legs as depicted in this Rossi advertisement haven an aphrodisiac effect on me.

RIP Bill Withers (1938 – 2020)

Who Is He (And What Is He to You)?” (1972)

Bill Withers was an American singer-songwriter known for songs such as “Lean on Me”, “Use Me” and “Ain’t No Sunshine”.

I give you “Who Is He (And What Is He to You)?” (1972) because it’s one of the best adultery songs ever with the unforgettable opening lines:

A man we passed just tried to stare me down
And when I looked at you
You looked at the ground

While researching this death, I came across a rather smart piece of music criticism by the American author Robert Christgau (born 1942):

“Withers sang for a black nouveau middle class that didn’t yet understand how precarious its status was. Warm, raunchy, secular, common, he never strove for Ashford & Simpson-style sophistication, which hardly rendered him immune to the temptations of sudden wealth—cross-class attraction is what gives ‘Use Me’ its kick. He didn’t accept that there had to be winners and losers, that fellowship was a luxury the newly successful couldn’t afford.