Attack of the tragicomic kitten.

I was looking through many boxes of random and not-so-random things when I came upon some amusing items that date back to the time of OH YOU THIS, when I was all about getting my music heard by as many people as possible and playing live. Here are a few crude mock promos I made at the time.

I gave some serious thought to plastering these things all over the place downtown and/or advertising in Upfront magazine. Then it struck me that someone could sue me if they really wanted to, since I was inventing celebrity quotes that didn’t really exist. At least it was fun to do. I find it amusing that I’m shirtless in both of them and look kind of pissed. And apparently at one time I was gifted with the ability to fly. Those were the days.

I also considered advertising on CJAM for a while, and wrote out a potential voiceover ad that went like this:

Are you tired of music that doesn’t say anything? Tired of insipid ear candy manufactured for the instant gratification-craving masses? Tired of knowing exactly when the chorus is going to appear, and reappear? Tired of hearing that chorus repeated about twenty seven times?

The answer is probably no, because you’re not me. But, if you were me, you’d probably be saying, “Hey! Why can’t I get a gig anywhere in this city? Is it because the few establishments that might be receptive to my music are also home to seemingly invisible music coordinators/club owners? Is it because I don’t pander to the masses, and I’m the quintessential outsider of my generation, destined to develop a cult following of people who play the guitar with their thumbs and have lucid dreams involving chlorine?”

And the answers are irrelevant, because I’m almost out of time. And my name is irrelevant, because you can only buy my CDs from me, though one of them is available at Bubi’s. But you should visit my website, http://www.johnnywestmusic.com, because whatever higher power you believe in commands that you do so.

If you’re confused, just think about this: we’re all rats in a sea of foam rubber.

Thanks for subjecting yourself to my voice.

Brainstorming on the general subject of website promotion, and trying to figure out if I wanted a www. site or not, led to this.

Coming at you from the Great Record Label Onslaught of 2002, it’s a rejection letter!

If my music was such a pleasure to listen to, why didn’t anyone at Sonic Unyon offer to travel to windsor and give me a handjob? That’s the question that still keeps me up at night.

Regardless of their reasoning, the lack of gratification is precisely why I never sent them another CD after that.

Finally, here are some random guys, some of whom look like they’re wearing straitjackets.


I was listening to Aphex Twin when I did those last two fellas. I’m not sure why I remember that. I’m also not sure why they’re all facing to the left. It must have been symbolic of something at the time, like my overwhelming desire to dance naked atop a skyscraper to the music of Right Said Fred while bathed in yellow light.

7 comments

  1. The Right Said Fred also sorta explains why you are shirtless in the images at the beginning of the post…I guess that answers my question of whether you are in fact to sexy for your shirt!

    Come up with any ideas for your drawing? 😛

  2. any record label that chooses to sign the ghost is dancing as one of their “couple acts per year” obviously doesn’t know much about music.
    that’s right, sonic unyon, i went there!

  3. Oh….SNAP!

    And Maya — my brain hasn’t been doing too well with visual ideas lately. So I think I shall leave it up to you, if that’s alright, because I know anything you chose to draw for me would be overflowing with awesomeness. Plus I like surprises.

  4. Telly Savalas once lollypopped that looking to the left is indicative of the artist’s desire to always look ahead. And using the left side of the brain while drawing simple characters captures the simplicity of most people. I like these drawings as I have met these guys in real life and yours are more interesting.

  5. that is the only advertising i’ve ever seen that i LOVE. i wish i saw those flyers downtown and i wish i heard that voice ad on cjam. i loughed out loud. i love your art!

  6. I don’t think I’ve ever been much of a visual artist, but thank you. I’m glad you enjoyed the silliness. The only thing that stopped me from putting those things up downtown back in the day was that I quoted some famous people as saying some odd things, and I didn’t want to risk getting in any trouble. Though I guess it’s pretty safe to say nobody ever would have gotten wind of my insulting them or appropriating their likeness for my own twisted purposes, so I probably should have gone ahead and had some fun.

  7. do it now. if you’re worried, put some sort of disclaimer at the bottom saying all quotes were non-existant. or something. i would love to see those around the city. i’ll help you put them up if you want!

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s