posted on August 6, 2008 at 9:34 pm

one thing that sure is different about painting n music
is technology
i mean
when you paint youre still using the olde way
theres no new technology
to aid
or master
youre still basically up against the board
with a brush or fingers and paint or pastel or ink
ok theres been a few new things
airbrushing i guess
and that sort of thing
they do on computers like mrkillabee (not me)
(check out that guy …!)
most are still doing it a la van gogh or leonardo
contrast this to music
where the developments are constantly making yer head spin
every 5 or 10 years a revolution in music technology
its affecting the music too…they are verily now intertwined
stuff you can do now ( at home)
would have made bob clearmountains jaw drop in 81 in 301
the ease speed and accuracy with which music can be manipulated
of course everybody uses the same programs
then everybody gets similar results
you can hear that now
that “pro-toolsed” sound
that slightly harsh and digital schmear
that first sleepy jackson record got it in spades
so nowadays being a musician you gotta cope with this
you got battles on yer hands right from the word glo
how good are ya on pro-tools sonny jim?
cos if someone in the band gets the upper hand
he’ll be imprinting more of his genius than yours
on yer next mp3
because musics become a semi-visual process (oh dark day!)
and the guy at the screen is king
whereas with painting…
its still just you
only you
no programs gonna slap that oil on for ya baby
painting same as it ever was
music in constant flux
now i am a renaissance man
i can write poetry
i can can compose and play music
i can draw and paint
i can act (a bit)
i tell you all these disciplines inform the other
many shared principles
allow your mind to wander
allow your voice or fingers to move with some fluid grace
allow art into everything you do
i tell you i think about art and music every second of every day
i think of words i think of stories i think of songs
i see shape and form everywhere
i hear melody and harmony in natures divine sounds
i notice poetry in the speech of everyman
i notice when people are acting
i am reconnected to the vegetal kingdom
and flowers blow my fucking mind
blumenkraft fur ewigt
i take it all in
a giant filter examing everything as for its usefulness in art
i am in love with art and music
these things happen so easily for me now
and all i can say to those who wonder why
let go
let go
why dont you let go?
let go off your stiffness your rigidity
get some wonder into your mind
you are john lennon or renoir or dylan thomas
its all there for you except youre YOU
and they werent
but its all there
every coloursoundpoem
i’m gonna keep on trying
i’ve got to see where i can take this
its for its own sake now
not for money
(voice of reality: ignore that last remark)
there is a definite pattern unfolding right before my eyes
do i have enough years left
to keep this up
everything i do will be full of love
all of this
but with hard won patience
with strict discipline when necessary
a commitment to no straight lines or bum notes
keep exploring
everybody knows what i can do
why keep doing that?
do something and move on
let it go
oh how i long to let utmw go
so olde now
dont wanna ever talk about it
or sing it
or hear it or about it ever
just keep the silent royalties dribbling in
put it in the movies
yes please
sample it chop it up
cover it
do a disco or emo version
let the veronicas and bobby flynn and matchbox 20 sing it
i dont care
i was done with it years ago i wanna move on
imagine keep getting dragged back to one little point on yer arc
hey numbskulls i gotta move on now
let me go
(voice of reality: i want whatever he’s been smokin’)
no one can squeeze anything else out of that fucking thing
hey i’m painting ganesha in bondi on a huge piece of paper
ah they dont care
utmw makes money and thats all that matters
matter matters
at least utmw aint too bad if you gotta be saddled
it could be and frequently is worse
i dont mind it
but like
yeah uh huh
art/music ramble

32 Responses to “music/art ramble”

  1. avatar
    knot | 6 August 2008 at 10:32 pm #

    Been thinking about the first computer…
    ENIAC was initially developed by the U.S. Army during WWII for military use. The innovative so-called “Project PX” was in the beginning stages of construction in June 1944, with final assembly in the fall of 1945. The machine designed by Drs. Eckert and Mauchly was a Frankenstein’s monster. When it was finished, the ENIAC filled an entire room, weighed thirty tons, and consumed two hundred kilowatts of power.

    It generated so much heat that it had to be placed in large room with a forced air cooling system.Over 19,000 vacuum tubes were the primary element in the computer’s circuitry. ENIAC also had fifteen hundred relays and hundreds of thousands of resistors, capacitors, and inductors. All of this electronica was held in forty-two panels nine feet tall, two feet wide, and one foot thick. And so our computer was born, cast out of Heaven and onto Earth, to calculate war and death.

    Mechanical elements in ENIAC were all external to the calculator within. These were an IBM card reader for input, a card punch for out-put, and the 1,500 associated relays. ENIAC was a Goliath with vacuum tubes. ENIAC could do 20 hours of work previously performed by Army personnel, and complete those same calculations in 30 seconds.

    During World War II, a “computer” was a person who calculated artillery firing tables using a desk calculator. Think of that next time you sit at your desk typing away.

  2. avatar
    Cee | 6 August 2008 at 11:04 pm #

    To let go is not to regret the past,
    but to grow and live for the future.

    I have a painting due in a couple of weeks and I haven’t begun!

    I keep getting calls from a racist who wants to work with diverse populations who have been mistreated by racism. She’s very creepy.

  3. avatar
    restaurant mark | 6 August 2008 at 11:24 pm #

    really loved this one and couldn’t agree more with what you said…
    it’s quite obvious you’re in love with art and music…it shows, it sounds, it lives, it breathes. i feel it in your songs and your painting, which one day hopefully, i’ll be lucky enough to own one…or two. i see your painting making huge leaps in skill and your own personal style. in the songs, which are great as a whole obviously…but it’s the combination of the passion put into every part that makes the whole. your voice has a tone like nobody else…the bass lines, so snakey and melodic, and of course those guitars players are good too. yes, you love it…and so do i. thank you for all you’ve contributed to my musical life. funny thinking about the transformation of the recording technology. would’ve been unheard of to make a full length cd with good sound quality at my house 20 years ago. i know all of the proper recording studios here have either closed or are struggling. but jesus 100 bucks an hour…and that was ten years ago. we had to take out a loan to make a demo in ’97. and we were rushed and unsatisfied when we were done. just having to say…oh it’s good enough, we don’t have time to cut it again…that’s a shitty way to record. arguing with an engineer who didn’t care anyway and just wanted to go home. now we’ve got motu digital performer…unlimited tracks, effects, automation…control, but you do still have to write a good song though or none of the bells and whistles matter. nice having them when you do though. a long way from a yamaha 4 track, but that was fun too! anyway, i’m babbling…

    take care everyone

  4. avatar
    Shawn El | 7 August 2008 at 12:03 am #

    Great – when the cherch go on tour next time can you play some of my favorites (and *not* *that*):

    Night Friends
    Awful Ache
    Day of the Dead
    Pure Chance
    The Silencer

    Others too numerous to mention (and *not* *that* one).

  5. avatar
    nickfiction | 7 August 2008 at 12:58 am #

    i agree

  6. avatar
    nickfiction | 7 August 2008 at 1:02 am #

    i heard milky way on the radio the other day and it seems as if the younger tots knew this song quite well. I remember the first time i heard it or saw the video and I remember racing to buy the record ( yep , the record ! ) but , yeah, i think we heard it enough already. Besides , didn’t you say you are still making some new ones for us loyal churchgoers?

  7. avatar
    heather | 7 August 2008 at 1:33 am #

    think on this too knot

    Byron’s daughter – computer designer

    Lovely posts today and yesterday SK


  8. avatar
    Brien Comerford | 7 August 2008 at 1:38 am #

    Compelling and irrefutable Sk comments regarding how music is manipulated and cheapened. That’s why “Acoustic and Intimate” was such a vital album verifying SK’s greatness. Just his voice and his guitar adroitly met the challenge. The live 2007 DVD also passed with flying colors. Could you imagine Brian Johnson unplugged?

    Please do a mynah bird drawing !!! You’re musically indebted to the Byrds.

  9. avatar
    Richard | 7 August 2008 at 1:52 am #

    UTMW is not my favourite Church song but it is special to me for one reason – it managed to be hugely successful despite being so fundamentally a Church song.

    It did not mark the point at which I started to like your ‘old stuff’ more than your ‘new stuff’ – unlike, say, the Models when Andrew Duffield left (and they got big), or the Cure when it went silly (and they got big).

    Instead the world was caught off-guard and got a glimpse of how good a pop song can be without sounding like anything that had come before it.

    We, of course, can play UTMW whenever we choose. It’s understandable that you are frustrated by the feeling that you don’t have that luxury.

    Maybe the trick is to stop thinking of the song as an albatross and start treating it as a brilliant, if fading, tattoo.

  10. avatar
    CAPTAIN BEYOND | 7 August 2008 at 2:35 am #

    to me ‘utmw’ means meeting my one true love way back when but does that one true love want to meet me here and now, am i ever going back to Cali?, no i don’t think so, it looks like i will be homeless once again be cos Mary and I are having problems dealing with each other lately so no thanks to you esskay…

  11. avatar
    MEM | 7 August 2008 at 2:57 am #

    ganesha in bondi

    a hyperlink to all artist
    at everymoment

    beginning: blankwhite
    hands or brush or finger

    invokes everyimage

    space sentience
    is everygesture

    (that honey,
    yes, spiked)

    Q: do u ever sketch your ideas
    before you paint them?

    perhaps generate ideas
    refind them working

    out (somewhat)
    before it is painted?

    helpful to
    gogh + leon

  12. avatar
    Rachel | 7 August 2008 at 3:20 am #

    I’m an illustrator trained in traditional painting techniques, but I’ve recently been delving into digital “painting”. Nothing beats old fashioned pencil or paint on paper – it’s good for the soul. But I must admit, with the portability of computers and the software available, one can do some really exciting things, and achieve a “painterly” style that can be as intuitive as fingerpainting. Your art can virtually go anywhere in the world instantaneously. Plus, if you mess up (or if maybe someone were to attack your work with turquoise virtual paint), you have more options in going back to fix it… It is weird that one’s efforts don’t tangibly exist though…

    Good luck with Ganesha. The rewards that you are getting out of doing your paintings… the exploring, the searching… is tangible in them, and inspiring to me. Thanks.

  13. avatar
    kat | 7 August 2008 at 4:12 am #

    you’re doing great sk. just keep doin… what’s in your heart.


  14. avatar
    melissa | 7 August 2008 at 6:34 am #

    'a giant filter examing everything as for its usefulness in art'

    and you do it so, so well! LOVE, love love today's art & music ramble … it's like a breath of fresh air, coming home from another bleh day at work. The love and passion that you have for what you do is so inspiring 🙂

    Please continue!

  15. avatar
    markobears | 7 August 2008 at 7:51 am #

    let go, let go. and let the winds of change direct you

  16. avatar
    MEM | 7 August 2008 at 8:23 am #

    here’s a exercise
    i’m completely serious
    about this

    get a sketch book
    n’draw your hand
    from ur pov

    (point of view)
    draw ur hand again
    from another perspective

    learn the bone structure
    ligatures, and muscles
    that compose these situations

    learn to draw such an object
    from memory at any
    given perspective

    memorize the structure of ur hand
    until u can visualize
    and then render it

    this u are able n’ready for
    once you can master
    the dimensionality of space

    of which is surrounded by
    form, then you progress
    the figure, the skull, layer

    upon layer, this daVinci was
    a master of u aspire to
    the same w/ur ability

    do not underestimate
    talent technique and discipline
    give insight

    a vision of botticelli
    on a soft afternoon, somewhere the color
    the light, the memory of the moment

  17. avatar
    use an e-bow! use it again! and again | 7 August 2008 at 9:22 am #

    UTMW was played a whole 3 times on BBC Radio 1…
    You should’ve put Pete’s e-bow solos in it though…

  18. avatar
    Thomas Thomsen, Denmark | 7 August 2008 at 10:08 am #

    So how about releasing The Church and your solo stuff on vinyl, too, in the near future, mr. Renaissance Man, as I suggested yesterday?
    The latest technology actually allows you to transfer vinyl to MP3’s AND erase the scratches and pops.

  19. avatar
    eek | 7 August 2008 at 11:11 am #

    I realise probably the last thing you want a comment on is UTMW, but what the hell, that’s what I’m going to comment on.

    oh how i long to let utmw go
    so olde now
    dont wanna ever talk about it
    or sing it
    or hear it or about it ever
    i was done with it years ago i wanna move on
    imagine keep getting dragged back to one little point on yer arc
    hey numbskulls i gotta move on now
    let me go

    You will be asked questions about UTMW; there will be people who come to your shows most wanting to hear UTMW (and will leave as soon as it’s finished, especially if it’s late); and you will be forever known as “that ‘Under the Milky Way’ guy” by many people. You aren’t going to get away from that (unless you make yourself so completely disagreeable no one wants anything to do with you ever at all, but that’s a bit extreme).

    When you try so hard to push it away, it will always be hanging around you — every minute of every single day. But by accepting it — which yes, does mean answering questions about it and singing it (both without rancor) — you’ll be more free of it than you are when you are always dreading the next mention of it, even when that mention doesn’t come. Accepting that it is part of you and part of many people’s perception of you will actually allow you to more truly move on than any arbitrary decision to be finished with it would.

  20. avatar
    Thomas Thomsen, Denmark | 7 August 2008 at 11:28 am #

    The version of Under The Milky Way which was recorded for El Momento Descuidado is very cool. I’d much rather listen to that version than the original.
    I remember being at the latest Church concert in Copenhagen (around the time Uninvited, Like The Clouds was released), and this woman in her 40’s yelled out “Play Under the Milky Way”), and I just wanted to strangle her with my bare hands, as I knew how Steve feels about it. And then when The Church did play it, she had to yell out “THANK YOU”, as if that was the only song that could possibly make the concert worthwhile for her. I cringed…

  21. avatar
    Hellbound Heart | 7 August 2008 at 11:42 am #

    you talk about the whistles and bells available for music and art and whatnot…honey, one can have all the doo-dads in the world but there’s no substitute for talent…just look at the acoustic versions of your songs, all stripped down and sounding brilliant…
    love always…

  22. avatar
    Anonymous | 7 August 2008 at 1:30 pm #

    Steve, did you ever ask Clearmountain about his 1979 work with Mick Ronson and Ian Hunter?

  23. avatar
    lily was here | 7 August 2008 at 1:47 pm #

    you’ll be remembered as the guy who wrote milky way, whereas i will only be remembered as the girl who loved milky way 🙂 but im not complaining. Such a beautiful song, not my favourite church song, but nonetheless a legend. Funny how many think of it as a ‘love song’. To me it reflects loneliness, or rather, aloneness and wanting.


    ps away for the weekend, i hear its snowing where Im going 🙂 gonna be jack frosty.. psst .. ZOO_42 is da bomb!!

    STOP THE PRESS – bhagavad guitars are back together!

  24. avatar
    fantasticandy | 7 August 2008 at 2:22 pm #

    oh…. the times iv’e been asked,
    what software do you use?
    pro tools?
    nah… i say none of ’em.
    what DO you use then? they say.
    i hold up my hands and say…these.
    no tweaking…no editing…
    if it sounds inept..that’s ’cause i am!
    good ‘un today killer.

  25. avatar
    the devil's advocate | 7 August 2008 at 2:49 pm #

    Folk luddites used to say the same thing about electric instruments, you know…

  26. avatar
    jax | 7 August 2008 at 5:36 pm #

    I agree..”Pure Chance” is the new UTMW.. remember Art Is God Is Love-thats all there is.. Finito Benito..

  27. avatar
    Anonymous | 7 August 2008 at 6:28 pm #

    Pro tools?
    Being a musician (like a good artist) will always be about the ability you have in your hands and fingers, and no amount of technological mumbo jumbo will ever change that.
    A guy who can’t play is still just that…a guy who can’t play.

    Regarding the big hit…

    It is quite honestly one of the greatest songs ever written and how such a simplistic 12 string progression could be so successful in the synthesizer driven 80’s still blows my mind.
    That is something I was and always will be so proud of you guys for.
    I can fully understand your frustration with having to play it for the gazillionth time.
    But it would be kind of like Macca showing up and not doing Yesterday.
    For the record though…it is not my favorite song off of Starfish.
    NSEW is.

    Nice read today Steve.

  28. avatar
    davem | 7 August 2008 at 7:05 pm #

    I much prefer to look forward with you……painkiller, coffee hounds etc etc.

  29. avatar
    fantasticandy | 7 August 2008 at 8:05 pm #

    what the bloody hell happened to the EP?
    and where’s my mercator DVD
    or me shriek soundtrack?
    oi, for that matter inever got me bloody copy of ‘cardboard’!
    bloody lazy you are!
    get a bloody shift on will ya?
    ‘when the boss comes back and he looks at this crack’………..


    p.s. where’s me bloody 15 min prog epic an’ all???????????

    all bloody talk……….

  30. avatar
    verdelay | 7 August 2008 at 8:08 pm #

    Short Play about Blasphemy

    Casual Observer: hey Ganesha – man, guess what? They’re still out there painting you.

    Ganesha: Say what?

    Casual Observer: That’s right, my man. In Bondi.

    Ganesha: Wha..? Oh, brother… with all the trunk and shit?

    Casual Observer: Yep.

    Ganesha: Aww, shit man…that old game? you gotta be messin with me..?

    Casual Observer: I shit you not.

    Ganesha: Damn. Them folks have gotta move on some, dig?

    Casual Observer: I dig.

    Ganesha: Righteous.



    Casual Observer: Essence of Harry Flowers

    Ganesha: Spirit of Miles Davis

  31. avatar
    steve kilbey | 7 August 2008 at 8:58 pm #

    if i accept utmw
    ganesha can accept a trunk call….right?

  32. avatar
    mobino at gmail dot com | 30 January 2009 at 6:50 pm #

    markobears said…
    let go, let go. and let the winds of change direct you

    Can someone tell me where/what this line is from? I think its a snong lyric, but I can’t find it. Its driving me crazy? Please help.

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