Tuesday, 27 December 2011

Steve Hoffman Music Forums

The Steve Hoffman Music Forum is a great place for the Van fan to spend a few hours.  There are thousands of words about our favourite Belfast native.  Most of Van's albums are discussed by fans.  Some of the comments can be shallow but there are a few guys who have written some pretty interesting stuff.  It's a great read and below the photo is a sample: 

Steve and his wife

"Wavelength, man, was that title song all over my radio station in 1978. Certainly the promo machine of WB was cranking like it hadn’t in years, as this was the first notes of Van I’d heard in several years. Radio seemed to have totally ignored Hard Nose, Veedon and APOT and now we were force fed, constantly, the title track ad nauseum, or so it seemed to me.
This was a time I was listening to The Ramones, Talking Heads, Patti Smith…yeah, she covered Van Morrison, that “Alter Kocker”, remember him? and she showed him “how to do it” now with her great cover of "G-L-O-R-I-A…hahaha, what did I know, but I’m 16 and listening to all this great new music and this Alter Kocker pops out Wavelength….
I remember seeing Van Morrison on Saturday Night at this time. He performed "Wavelength" and "Kingdom Hall". Ah, the Dumb Dumb doo doo songs as I call them now…. I hated those songs then and I don’t really like them now. They seemed so “not cool” and just very tired to me. and now they just sound "dated". They tried to hard to make a pop hit and what was with the back up singers???? Who should be singing anyway? Those synthesisers and backing vocals were just grating to me.
I’d thought this guy was cool ya know? But in 1978 he was so not cool to me. I didn’t know that he’d just done a record with the uber cool Dr. John and I didn’t realise he had just been part of The Last Waltz; this sort of thing was off my radar at this time. I was a New York punk soaking up all that was cool. I couldn’t escape Wavelength and Wavelength was so not cool to my ears at the time. Still isn’t for me either..

Steve With a Mullet in the 90s
It was like all of a sudden a guy I’d really liked a few years ago became what I’d hated about the seventies music scene. I liked old soul, but this seemed “too polished” for me. Certainly it now seems this was one mass push to be a “big hit artist” again. He’s quoted in that Cameron Crowe Rolling Stone piece in wanting to have a “hit” so he could connect with his audience, well he got sort of what he’d wished for. Some think this era of live concerts that float around on tape are among the worst in his career. I guess he wasn’t feeling these fans adulating over this hit…
Fast track about 10 years, after I rediscover this artist, so I figure, this was an album I had to get, because it had such a big song on it. Well I’ve given this one many an adult listens over the years now that I’m also an Alter Kocker… but as a whole this is the second platter in a row that doesn’t really do anything for me….and I will probably never listen to again in my lifetime.
So, you can say its not one of his stronger albums for me. He appears to be just going through the pop/rock idiom game of the time… I can appreciate the fun and playfulness he went for on this one, but it just doesn’t work for me."

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