Tag Archives: 1939

RIP Sonny Chiba (1939 – 2021)

Sonny featured in Japanorama 

Sonny Chiba was a Japanese actor and martial artist, a contemporary to Bruce Lee in Hong Kong.

opening title scene of Karate Kiba (1973)

I give you the opening title scene of Karate Kiba (1973) and the episode from Japanorama from 2007.

The Karate Kiba sequence has been copied nearly verbatim in Pulp Fiction (1994).

RIP Phil Spector (1939 – 2021)

This is the excerpt where Albert Goldman completely destroys the Wall of Sound production of Spector

Phil Spector was an American musician and record producer known for his Wall of Sound sound production.

The Wall of Sound was a very dense sound with little room for details of individual instruments, exemplified in recordings such as “Da Doo Ron Ron” “Be My Baby” or “Baby, I Love You”, all released in 1963.

There is a good documentary from 1982 on Phil Spector, without his cooperation , in which Albert Goldman is recorded as saying:

“Rock ‘n’ roll is basically institutionalized adolescence. And the bottom line of rock ‘n’ roll is that it’s a baby food industry and Phil found a new formula for baby food.”

I thought that was quite funny.

RIP Spencer Davis (1939 – 2020)

Spencer Davis was a British musician known for such songs as “I’m a Man” (1967).

I give you that song here in a 18 minute bastardized disco version released in the US on Prelude.

It became a staple at the Paradise Garage, being, of course, popular with the gay crowd. I can just see all these men dancing and mouthing the “I’m a Man” words while touching their bodies and glancing lasciviously at one another. Lovely.

“I’m a Man” (1978) by Macho

RIP Alex Varenne (1939 – 2020)

Alex Varenne was a French comics artist.

This I know from the time in the late 1980s when I bought L’Écho des savanes and RanXerox was my hero. That time.

Alex Varenne is famous for his erotic comics which were fashionable from the late 1960s onwards. In this short reportage, he tells about his career in erotic comics, how his love life was very rich and full, how he drew from live models, his girlfriends, or friends of this girlfriends, how he used to tell his models stories, how the times have changed, starting in the sexual revolution, the era between the pill and AIDS (“La periode apres la pilule … avant le sida …”) , then the onset of BDSM and current times which are largely masturbatory. He talks about his admiration for Roy Lichtenstein.

Alex Varenne – Itenéraire Libertin (2015)

RIP Kenzō Takada (1939 – 2020)

Kenzō Takada was a Japanese fashion designer. He was, with Yamamoto, the most famous Japanese fashion designer of the 1980s.

Some of my best friends are in fashion. The fashion and arts scene always threw the best parties here in Antwerp, as I suppose, they do anywhere around the world.

Of all the arts, fashion probably is at the same time the most vacuous and the most embodied of the arts; the most ephemeral and the most ‘out there’.