Archive | Music Matters

‘Homecoming’: Venus in Virgo

I’ve watched the brilliant Netflix concert film Homecoming three times now and all I can say is that Beyoncé is such a Virgo goddess that she makes the late James Brown look like a slacker. Also please note that Virgos don’t get credit for being the healer of the zodiac, but my o my does Lady B heal hearts ancestral lines cultural wounds with her gorgeous tapestries of music and dance and storytelling and costuming. She makes me cry with her womanly curves and womanly courage and womanly creativity, and she makes me hopeful too. For her triple-entendre love of labor and labor of love reminds us that we can change everything so long as we roll up our sleeves and open our hearts. Like I said: a Virgo goddess.

An Earl and a Countess

Larry Rivers, “Formal Marriage Portrait Of Earl And Camilla McGrath.”

I’ve been reading a ton about Earl McGrath, the ultimate mid-20th-century arts-world mover and shaker– the only thorn who ever truly pierced Eve Babitz‘s side. Besties with Mick Jagger and Andy Warhol, the godfather of Harrison Ford’s kids, pals with Jasper Johns and Aretha Franklin and Babs and you name it, Jesus (probably Jesus too), he presided over everyone’s parlor, curating the best be-ins and the slyest jokes. Continue Reading →

‘Cold War’ Beauty

What follows is a review adapted from a lecture I gave to the delightful Westchester and Huntington cinema clubs. It’s been a joy to share films with these groups all year.

I think this is the most beautiful film of the year. As soon as I saw it, I called [curator] David [Schwartz] and begged him to let me to show it you. And what’s most special is this beauty feels like a hard-earned decision to not just see the darkness but the lightness in a world full of oppression and corruption and hard, hard times–both then and now.

About a 15-year relationship between two musicians in Cold War-era Poland, it is directed by Pawel Pawlikowski, who in addition to directing My Summer of Love and The Woman in the Fifth, directed 2013’s Ida–so good!–which is also set in his native country of Poland. This one is based on his parents, who both died in 1989 after chasing each other for 40 years on both sides of the Iron Curtain. Like this film’s central characters, they were named Victor and Zula, and were blond and dark respectively. Continue Reading →

"All, everything I understand, I understand only because I love."
― Leo Tolstoy