We don’t have an RFC Flashback for you this week here in PopCult. Instead, what you see at the top of this post is “Ape Boy Shirt,” a new episode of the Radio Free Charleston video show for 2022.
It’s a bit of a procrastinator’s special, considering that it’s the first new video episode this year, and I’m dropping it on December 31, but hey, I wanted to keep my streak going, and we have now had at least one video RFC every year since 2006.
Because I spent a big chunk of the year dealing with complications from Myasthenia Gravis, I did not get out to shoot any new video. However, I have a stockpile of great video projects I’ve made over the years that never made it into an episode of the show, until now.
On top of those hidden gems, I decided at the last minute to use videocraft to make a video for David Synn’s song “The Island of Gorgo” last Wednesday, and I’m really happy with the way it came out. It’s our first video on this episode of RFC.
Our host segments were shot really quick at the new City Center at Slack Plaza in Charleston. It was actually the first time Mel and I have been able to check out the new space, and it’s really cool. Maybe in 2023 we can record some bands there. This show was shot and edited so quickly that you can even hear Mel say “Rolling” at one point because I was rushing the edit.
Our title shirt is “Ape Boy,” by Robert Jimenez. I’ve been plugging Robert’s trading cards and books and stuff for years, and something about this shirt just clicked with me. I think it might’ve been the ape wearing a fez and Big Boy-like coveralls. You can find this shirt and many other cool designs by Robert HERE.
After a brief appearance by The Potato Girl Singers, we jump right into the video for “The Island of Gorgo.” This is off of David’s lastest album, the very proggy “A New Dawn,” which you can purchase at Bandcamp.
The song is an instrumental prog-rock tour-de-force, with David trading keyboard licks with Jamie Skeen’s wild guitar. The video combines some psychedelic light show footage with scenes from the British Kaiju classic, Gorgo.
I think it came together pretty well.
Next up we went back to 2017 for the last video I shot before I had cataract surgery. Recorded live at The Blue Parrot, it’s Lee Harrah with Bad Blood, performing the Beatles classic, “Helter Skelter.” It’s a one-camera shoot, using camera audio, but the raw energy of the performance makes it worthwhile.
Following that, we have animation. In the grand tradition of Radio Free Charleston, it’s computer animation by my brother, Frank…depicting DEVO energy domes.
Following that we have what was previously a top-secret video I produced for Chuck Biel back in 2010. I produced two “bootleg” videos of Chuck’s band, Doctor Curmudgeon, which I posted in PopCult before the band’s official debut. This progressive metal trio included Chuck Biel, Vince Biel and Zack Shawkins, and I went to their secret lab and set up three cameras on tripods, with me running handheld, and came up with these videos.
In this episode of RFC, you get to see “From The Ridiculous To The Sublime,” which, if you pay close attention during the introduction, I totally forgot was the name of the song. So I made up the part about it being a secret. However, the part about Chuck’s secret music lab being bulldozed and replaced with a Starbucks…that part’s all true.
Playing us out in this edition of our video show we have The Sierra and Mo show, recorded live in Dunbar at what was then The Pour House (and is now The Bucket). Introducting this one, I misremembered the year we recorded it. This was actually filmed in 2011.
Now, of course, Sierra Ferrell is internationally recognized and is a Rounder Records recording artist. And she’ll still turn up performing in Dunbar, like she did a couple of weeks ago at The Shop.
And that is why we don’t have an RFC Flashback this week. We brought you a new show instead.