It’s no stretch to say that there would be no Dictators if not for Sandy Pearlman. He was the producer, manager, and visionary behind Blue Öyster Cult and the Dictators, and later produced the best works from the Clash and the Dream Syndicate. He was the maker of champions, the Captain Lou of music.
Sandy is dealing with some major health issues, and needs our help. He suffered a cerebral hemorrhage that’s left him unable to walk or talk, and is in need of crushingly expensive health care. A GoFundMe campaign has been set up to help pay for his care. Please give if you are so inclined. Every penny contributed will go towards his rehab and long-term care.
Today would have been Joey Ramone’s 65th birthday. The birthday bash is tonight at Webster Hall, and there are still a few tix available. One very special birthday present to us all has been provided by our own Andy Shernoff, in the form of a new video and tune called
“My Pal Joey” “Sweet Joey.” It’s a sweet tribute to a sweet guy. Andy played all the instruments on it, and we can only hope it makes its public debut in his set tonight, or maybe at his house show this coming w/e.
Check out the video below. The song is downloadable here, and all proceeds from your downloads go to The Joey Ramone Foundation for Lymphoma Research.
— Salvi C.
Happy birthday to 40% of the ‘Go Girl Crazy’ line-up, Andy Shernoff and Stu Boy King!
Hearing rumors that the Dictators NYC were working on a new song was met with equal parts excitement and anxiety in these parts. “New stuff? Yay!! Umm — don’t release the doves just yet. Andy’s written the entire catalogue up until now, and the quality of the tunes has been consistently top-shelf. I know the rest of the guys are all experienced writers, but they’ve never written for the Manitoba persona. There’s no doubt that they have the strength and the reach, but do they have the intestinal fortitude? What happens if this thing, you know — stinks? Are we going to have to avoid eye contact and golf clap every time they play it?”
Rest easy. I’m here to tell you that “Supply and Demand” is an excellent addition to the set, and more importantly, sounds like a Dictators song.
The subject matter, concerning the band members getting off their collective arses and answering the call of duty, is as much a mission statement as WLSRnR was. HDM barks, “We had to do it for them, we had to do it for us!” as if their collective lives depended on it. There’s no RTB solo, but he makes up for it by cramming bits from 6 or 7 solos into his intro to the tune. The whole thing is done at 2:07, making it the shortest song in the set.
Look, no one likes change. The comfort that comes with routine is kicked out from under you like a cheap joke in an old movie. But sometimes change is necessary, and a good thing. If the pipeline of Shernoff tunes is truly closed, then judging from their debut tune, the songwriting duties are safe in the hands of the tag-team of Manitoba and Friedman.
There may still be some copies of the 45 for sale at their upcoming shows, but you can always grab the download here: thedictatorsnyc.com
And don’t forget to vote for it as the Coolest Song of 2015 here!
— Salvi C.
Christmas arrived early this year with Black Friday’s release of the Dictators’ ‘Next Big Thing EP.’
Andrew W.K. did a fantastic job with his three remixes. I’m hearing details and flourishes that were previously buried, and he compliments each tune with organ or piano parts. The rhythm section gets a lot of love here–Stu now plays lead drums on NBT, and Andy’s bass is much higher in the mix of “Weekend.”
The three outtakes are a complete head rush. This version of “Backseat Boogie” is a monster and blows the familiar demo version out of the water! The early take of NBT has Andy singing, “They didn’t know we were DUDES!” Finally, the instrumental version of “Weekend” is rifftastic and will undoubtably serve as a karaoke bed for upcoming holiday parties.
I can’t overstate how much fun this EP is. For diehard fans of the band, this release is akin to a religious zealot being given a newly found Dead Sea Scroll.
— Salvi C.
Andrew W.K. and Andy Shernoff Discuss the ‘Go Girl Crazy!’ Remixes
Photo courtesy of Sandra Billig
We at The DFFD Blog are standing a little taller today: Last night (Nov. 18), our very own Dictators NYC were among the first rock bands to play Paris following the horrific attacks of last Friday. We are bursting with pride at their display of defiance and just general rock awesomeness in the face of ongoing terrorist threats. Not only did the band not cancel the gig, they scrambled to find a new location for the performance after their original venue canceled them. If that’s not badassery, then what the hell is?!
These guys from a town that knows a little something about terrorism restored a bit of normalcy to a devastated city — and were justly rewarded with the gratitude and hugs of the 150 or so fans in attendance at La Mécanique Ondulatoire. A memory never to be forgotten for all present — and a beautiful gesture respected around the entire rock’n’roll universe.
Much thanks to Sandra Billig for the photo of the boys rocking out in Paris last night. And check out some super-rad drawings of the guys playing the show at Blog’n’kor.
We say it all the time (because we’re superfans) but never have we meant this more: D.F.F.D.!!!!
Ugly Things #40 is now available at www.ugly-things.com. For those of you who aren’t familiar with the magazine, it’s a biannual bible of musical history for both the obsessed and the dilettantes. This issue features the first ever interview with Stu Boy King, conducted by yours truly. Stu could not have been more generous with his time and patience for my carpet bombing of questions, and he had a ton of great stories from the GGC days. He also proved to have an amazing memory about stuff that happened 40 years ago.
There were a lot of nerves on both ends of the interview. I’ve never conducted one that wasn’t with a potential new hire, and Stu had never had the opportunity to tell his story. We both worked hard at getting this thing right, and I think the effort paid off in the results.
Here’s a teaser from the interview:
“Our only tour before the album came out was opening for Nazareth. We drove out to Winnipeg to open for them. Hudson and Ford were the middle act. I remember that it was a beautiful venue to play in. We did our sound check, and the acoustics in the place were perfect for the Dics. All the vibrato and feedback made us sound great, we couldn’t go wrong. Nazareth’s LP with ‘Love Hurts’ had just come out, and this was their shot at the big time. They didn’t want anything to interfere with their moment in the sun. We were loud and amped up, and sounding really good. We were jamming to ‘Diamond Dogs,’ me and Ross, and blowing it up. Nazareth saw this, and wanted no part of us trying to steal their thunder. They came in with a tight and precise package, and here come these young, fired up hooligans stirring the pot. We scared them, and got sent home after one gig!”
There are 8 more pages of this kind of insider ambrosia in the mag–order your copy now!