BLACK FRIDAY – Another Kid With A Gun

ANOTHER KID WITH A GUN is from VENICE ARTS CLUB MUSIC PROJECT, Volume 3. Features Michael Jost, Malia Luna, Spring Groove. Produced by VAC.

Cops in a frenzy shoot a man in the back at least 45 times
They said he had a gun – turns out they were lying
A witness to the crime took the mess to the internet
What kind of world do you want to live in, really?

Another kid with a gun…

VAC MUSIC – ‘Another Kid With A Gun’

 

Produced by VAC


MUSIC OF THE POST-PARADIGM: American Spring 2012

THE AMERICAN SPRING OF 2012

Liberty hangs in the balance at every moment, never still and always moving to maintain a footing. A nation at a crossroads has historically proven to be a less than pretty sight.  The 21st Century, arriving with the epic and viceral collapse known as 911, has continued a tidal wave of collapse trajectory through the first decade and now, in the year 2012, is taking hold. In America lines have been drawn and distinctions have been made.  Those few with most are drawing their battle plans, hording their riches and seeking to influence those who can change the law do change the law in favor of limitations that restrict democracy, freedom and liberty.  Meanwhile, the many with little have little.  But they do have a name.  They are the 99%.

We are the 99%.

We are men, women, children.  We are doctors, housewives, janitors, war veterans.  We are artists, poets and car mechanics.  We are ranchers, farmers and schoolteachers.  We are mothers, fathers and grandparents. We are journalists, watchkeepers. We are the anonymous and the known. We are everyone, everywhere. We are in America. We are in France and Spain and throughout Europe.  We are in all countries of Africa.  We are the people of Iran, Iraq, Syria, Egypt, Palestine, Israel. We are in Australia, Brazil, Chile, Hungary, the U.K. We are in every city of every state of every country and we are of every nation. We are the 99%.

The 99% understand how the concept of infinite growth has come and gone, the paradigm exhausted. One is reminded of the only graph used by Michael C. Ruppert in his speeches on Collapse to illustrate the dramatic spike in world population, a trajectory in line with its main and finite ingredient and catalyst, oil. Burn-off from the era of petroleum man is collapsing our ecosystem.

Now on the streets and in the neighborhoods and cities of America we are headed into spring followed by the long, hot days of summer. Crimes are being committed, liberties are being removed and there is a giant contraction taking place fueled by the greed, fear and the arrogance of the few.

Do not go back to sleep.

THE NIGHTCLUB AT THE END OF THE WORLD (NEW)

NEW is a space conceived by Michael C. Ruppert from the cabin of his Lifeboat Hour, a weekly radio show hosted by Ruppert and aired by Progressive Radio Network, Sunday at 9p Eastern. Ruppert points out how NEW and the Lifeboat Hour is not all bad news, that it is an original mix of music with madness, laughter with loss, skills with sorrow, community with calamity, love with grief, and joy in the moment.

Musically speaking, Ruppert is fond of playing cuts from a Venice, CA music project called the New White Trash (NWT), of which Ruppert is a founding member with Wade De Void, Andy Kravitz and others. The theme of the NWT is ‘Music of the Post-Paradigm’. The NWT manifesto reads like this:

Mining a new groove, and with a kind of rough grace, DOUBLEWIDE, the 37 song, 2 CD set from the NEW WHITE TRASH, chronicles the slide of the former American middle-class down a steep and slippery slope to the New White Trash, a place impartial to race, religion, creed or color.

The New White Trash (NWT) demographic is the outcome of the former middle class being folded in with the working poor and, for good measure, the unemployed and uninsured.  The NWT defines and represents a majority of people whose common bond includes and exists beyond the demographics of age, race, location, education. The people of the NWT are the new ‘have-not’s’, and by its nature and size, this vast swath of population (99%) is now squarely at odds with the 1% who own, operate and dispense our corporate universe, big pharma, big food, big oil, big defense and big government included. ‘By the people for the people’ is receding.

The Post-Paradigm Era describes the vacuum left by the sudden disappearance of the former American middle class.  It is in this vacuum we now find ourselves, tumbling in turmoil as home losses mount, bank balances shrink, and shelters are jammed with the likes of you and I. The good old days are done and dusted. That party is over. The coming chaos of the post-paradigm era will lead to a radical and immediate rethinking and remaking of America or it will lead us to complete devastation.

As Woody Guthrie filled a musical vacuum by acknowledging the pain and the suffering of the Great Depression, the New White Trash fills a bigger and more insidious vacuum left by a rampant, programmed consumerism that serves only corporations and their shareholders. 

This is a new breed of American music in which the message is clear: You’re f**ked.  But now what?  

NWT portrays a post-paradigm, ‘less beautiful’ America, brought to life through music, media, theatre and message – those of, love,need and a desire for social justice. ‘Drop it down’, ‘don’t dig too deep’, ‘we charge extra for this’, ‘take these’, ‘we can’t escape from’, all are the language of the NWT.  And for good reason.

If you got no credit and you got no cash, you’re NWT.  If you got more going out than you got coming in, you’re NWT. If your 401k is MIA, if you’ve filed for bankruptcy, if you find yourself living in a trailer or back with your parents, if your unemployment has run out, if your roads have holes and local schools are closing, if you lost your health insurance to a pre-existing condition, you are the NWT. If you bought the hype and borrowed on a dream,and now your house is gone and you’re selling your things, you’re the NWT. If you’re pissed off, yet you keep a sliver of love in your crossed heart and at least a post-ironic smile on your lips, you’re NWT. If what you had is gone – just like that – then you know you’re running with the New White Trash.

 The NWT offers what popular music does not: it recognizes and acknowledges all those who are being marginalized and dropping off the radar screens of “official” life. It is not all depressing. In fact, the NWT celebrates the joys, simple pleasures and love that are often re-discovered only in the darkest times.

NWT was produced by and at the Venice Arts Club. Other music produced by VAC promotes a similar tune and travels a road populated with the familiar themes of the Lifeboat Hour and the NEW. The VAC supports Ruppert’s effort for truth and social justice and gives a nod to his journey and his vision by presenting a gathering of relevant songs from our collection. Thanks for tuning in.

THE NEW WHITE TRASH – ‘It Would Be Strange’

NEW WHITE TRASH – ‘Running With The New White Trash’

FELL MUSIC – ‘Dangerous Ground

FELL MUSIC – ‘American Lite’

FELL MUSIC – ‘Somewhere South’

THE CHEETERS – ‘Bombshell Breakup’


BACK ROAD – Mike Ruppert and New White Trash at Venice Arts Club

Mike Ruppert’s song of the week on the Lifeboat Hour for Sunday, March 18, 2012, is BACK ROAD from DOUBLEWIDE, the debut release from the NEW WHITE TRASH, a music project Ruppert founded with Wade De Void and Andy Kravitz.  Other members include Cara Tompkins, Kristen Vigard, Malia Luna, James Mathers, Michael Jost, Robit Hairman, Phil Maggini. The 37 song 2-CD collection was recorded at the VAC and mastered by Bob Rice. NWT producer Doug Lewis says this about Back Road: “I liked it immediately and was surprised by the strength of Mike’s performance and how he poured himself into the music. I kept thinking, ‘Meatloaf, Bat Out Of Hell’! And Back Road fit a theme of the NWT which is ‘where the heart is’ as opposed to the apparently more immediate themes of Meltdown, or Running With The New White Trash, or Realize The Lie of war. Back Road is a cousin song to Wherever There, One Good Reason and Trailer Light On, and maybe a couple more.”

In introducing the song Ruppert mentions how a musician friend, Jim Sullins, sent him a hummed hint of a melody over the piano track.  From that Ruppert fashioned Back Road.

MICHAEL RUPPERT @ VAC

NEW WHITE TRASH.com

NEW WHITE TRASH. music


REALIZE THE LIE – Music of the Post-Paradigm with the New White Trash

DOUBLEWIDE, the 37 song, 2-CD debut album from the New White Trash, chronicles the slide of the former American middle-class down a steep and slippery slope to the New White Trash, a place impartial to race, religion, creed or color. Dubbed, ‘music of the post-paradigm’, NWT members include Wade De Void, Michael C. Ruppert, Andy Kravitz, Kristen Vigard, Robit Hairman, Phil Maggini, Malia Luna, Cara Tompkins, Michele McVicar, Michael Jost.

About the New White Trash and the Post-Paradigm era:

“The New White Trash (NWT) demographic is the outcome of the former middle class being folded in with the working poor and, for good measure, the unemployed and uninsured.  The NWT defines and represents a majority of people whose common bond includes and exists beyond the demographics of age, race, location, education. The people of the NWT are the new ‘have-not’s’, and by its nature and size, this vast swath of population (99%) is now squarely at odds with the 1% who own, operate and dispense our corporate universe, big pharma, big food, big oil, big defense and big government included. ‘By the people for the people’ is receding. The Post-Paradigm Era describes the vacuum left by the sudden disappearance of the former American middle class.  It is in this vacuum we now find ourselves, tumbling in turmoil as home losses mount, bank balances shrink, and shelters are jammed with the likes of you and I. The good old days are done and dusted. That party is over. The coming chaos of the post-paradigm era will lead to a radical and immediate rethinking and remaking of America or it will lead us to complete devastation.” (from NWT Manifesto/VAC.com)

The durge-like quality of REALIZE THE LIE underscores the message: Running with the dogs of war/We’ve run this race before/It’s rotten to the core/When only War can save you – Realize The Lie

Realize The Lie features Wade De Void, Michael Ruppert, Kristen Vigard, Cara Tompkins, Malia Luna, Michele McVicar. Produced by the VAC. Mastered by Bob Rice.

NEW WHITE TRASH, ‘MUSIC OF THE POST-PARADIGM’. Artwork/Cara Tompkins@EWC

NEW WHITE TRASH – DOUBLEWIDE. Artwork/Cara Tompkins@EWC

 NEW WHITE TRASH HEADQUARTERS, VENICE CA USA. Image/Cara Tompkins@EWC


THE NEW WHITE TRASH – From ‘Dangerous Ground’ to ‘Doublewide’

In 1997, a decade before a fortuitous meeting between Michael C. Ruppert and Venice musician Doug Lewis in the spring of 2008, Lewis was busy recording his on-going Fell Music project. The meeting of Ruppert and Lewis would lead to the forming of the New White Trash and the making of their debut album, Doublewide, a 37 song double-disc set chronicling the slide of the former middle class down a ‘steep and slippery slope to the new white trash, a place and genre impartial to race, creed or color’. Doublewide was released January 11, 2011 and has since found a home with a worldwide audience of truth seekers investing in alternative and conscious voices to match the signs of the times. One song from Doublewide, titled We Can’t Escape From found its way onto the soundtrack of the DVD release of Collapse the Movie, directed by documentary filmmaker Chris Smith and featuring Michael Ruppert as the only character in the film. Roger Ebert said this of the film: “I don’t know when I’ve seen a thriller more frightening. I couldn’t tear my eyes from the screen. “Collapse” is even entertaining, in a macabre sense. I think you owe it to yourself to see it. ”

Some people meet over drinks; Ruppert and Lewis met at a dog park adjacent to the Santa Monica airport near Venice, CA. In an excerpt taken from the article ‘Grooving With The Archetypes‘, a piece about the VAC written by Bud Theisen, Lewis says, “Mike and I met at the local dog park, our dogs got on very well and so did we. I gave Mike a copy of the Cheeters first CD and he loved it. He gave me a copy of Crossing The Rubicon, which I devoured.”  Lewis, always on the prowl for new musical talent, took an interest in Ruppert’s desire to play and record music. “I made him work for it,” says Lewis. “I pushed him pretty hard and he didn’t fold. In fact, he blossomed. Mike is a great teacher about what he knows, and a terrific  student when it comes to learning new skills.”

For Ruppert, those new skills included learning how to work the microphone while developing a more ‘left brain’ approach to writing, away from the factual reporting of his day to day and into a more sublime world of the trans-poetic, lyrical experience.  In a word…storytelling. Fortunately for Ruppert, Lewis had been mining this ground for decades, with themes and songs of cautionary tales to do with protest, eternal war, with revealing commentary swiped against a background extending from Vietnam to the big bomb.

For Lewis and Ruppert, there were no issues in reaching common ground in the recording studio. With their two sensibilities cut from the same desire to formulate words into the action of social commentary by speaking out through popular song, Lewis and Ruppert, along with Andy Kravitz, Kristen Vigard, Cara Tompkins, James Mathers, Malia Luna, and a host of others, poured their time and energies into recording their collaborations for what would become Doublewide.

Could two people be more different?  Lewis – tall, lanky, whip-smart with movie-star looks (think Willem DeFoe meets Chet Baker) and more rock and roll attitude than most rock & rollers vs Ruppert – a former LAPD cop who looks like he could be Wilford Brimley’s kid brother. Yet, for Lewis, meeting and recording with Ruppert had a reassuring effect. “Mike and my sensibilities are perfectly aligned. I’d been working this ground a long time, steering each of my collaborative projects into a direction of relevance, refining the message, speaking out. Working with Mike was a breath of fresh air. Between us, we hit a groove and didn’t waver”

Dangerous Ground‘ from Lewis’ Fell Music project was recorded in 1997 at Arthur Barrow’s Lotek Studios in Mar Vista. The message is familiar, the imagery informed and the lineage apparent from the Dangerous Ground to Doublewide.

Mark Baer, President, Museum of Monterey and Managing Director of SmartChannel.TV
March 2012

DANGEROUS GROUND video from FELL MUSIC TWO
THE FELL MUSIC PROJECT
DOUBLEWIDE from THE NEW WHITE TRASH. Artwork/Cara Tompkins
THE NEW WHITE TRASH. Artwork/Cara Tompkins
MICHAEL C. RUPPERT and DOUG LEWIS. Image/Cara Tompkins
RUPPERT/LEWIS at the VENICE ARTS CLUB. Image/Cara Tompkins

JAMES MATHERS DECODED – Storyboard scenes from the animated short film, ‘The Parking Lot At The Center Of Time’

No one would ever accuse VAC founding member James Mathers of spreading it on ‘too thin’. Everything he does is spread thick, especially his paint. Many of these oil-stick  drawing were completed here at the VAC.  During this period, the script for Parking Lot was refined then recorded with an ensemble cast including DJ Lyf, Malia Luna, Bailey Rye, Pablo Capra, Dead Dave, Doug Lewis, Cara Tompkins, Derek DeVries.

These drawings form the groundwork for the produced version of Parking Lot.  Approximately 80 drawings make up the storyboard for Parking Lot, here are a few choice selects.  The complete collection will be posted on this blog, coming soon.

JAMES MATHERS – STORYBOARD SCENES FOR ‘PARKING LOT AT THE CENTER OF TIME’

PARKING LOT AT THE CENTER OF TIME – YOU TUBE


ANOTHER KID WITH A GUN – Music & Social Commentary in the Post-Paradigm Era

Music as narrative, social commentary, and as a voice and act of protest threads a particular path through the American cultural and political experience.  Venice Arts Club promotes recording artists who use music and song as tools of recognition, and who forge rebellion and revolution through song lyric, rhythm, and melody.

The tone of much of FELL MUSIC is apparent by song title, including War Eternal, More War Now, Dangerous Ground, American Lite, Big Bird Over Baghdad, Made In The USA, Frontline.

Likewise, THE CHEETERS, a rock and roll ‘art band’, covers similar ground with Lies In High Fidelity, Baton Rouge, Bombshell Breakup, and Bring Me The News.

The NEW WHITE TRASH, a music project produced by Venice Arts Club, and whose members include activist Michael C. Ruppert, musician Wade De Void, grammy-nominated Andy Kravitz, and recording artist Kristen Vigard, released DOUBLEWIDE, a 2-disc, 37 song collection of ‘music of the post-paradigm’. Tracks highlighting such a paradigm are Running With The New White Trash, Don’t Dig Too Deep, Meltdown, Running On Rumor, to name a few.

Likewise, the 8 volume Venice Arts Club Music Project includes By Degree, Appointment In Samarra, Liberty, Got Your Gun Yet, Paralyze Me, No Love In Haiti, and Another Kid With A Gun, a song featuring VAC regulars Michael Jost, Spring Groove, Malia Luna, Michael C. Ruppert, Doug Lewis.

Check out this video for Another Kid With A Gun: