3 Killer Songs About Vincent van Gogh

Did you know that Vincent van Gogh has inspired (at least) three great songs? The first I want to share with you is by Jonathan Richman with the Modern Lovers backing him up (iTunes link), and it's really sweet -- smart, funny, and even moderately educational. Here's a music video a fan made on YouTube:

"Vincent van Gogh" - Jonathan Richman w/the Modern Lovers

Some sample lyrics:

Have you heard about the painter Vincent van Gogh,
Who loved color and who let it show.
Now in the museum...what have we here?
The baddest painter since God's Jan Vermeer.
And he loved, he loved, he loved life so bad,
His paintings had twice the color other paintings had.
So bad so bad that the world had to know,
The man loved color and he let it show.

"Vincent" - Don McLean

But there's more van Gogh action where that came from. Don McLean included a track entitled "Vincent" (iTunes link) on his famous American Pie album. It's sometimes misreferenced as "Starry Starry Night" as those are the opening lyrics. And guess what, there are fan videos for that one too....

Here's a truly powerful live performance from 1972, live on "Sounds for Saturday":

Sample lyrics:

And now I understand what you tried to say to me
how you suffered for your sanity
how you tried to set them free.
They would not listen
they did not know how
perhaps they'll listen now.

Read tons more about "Vincent" via Wikipedia, including a list of dozens of covers -- everyone from NOFX to Chet Atkins covered it. (Okay, okay, here's the NOFX cover and the Chet Atkins cover for the curious.)

"Vincent van Gogh" - Bob Dylan (Live w/Rolling Thunder Revue)

This one speaks for itself. Never officially released, it was written sometime in the '60s and available on various live bootlegs, primarily from the '70s. Here is one such performance:

But Wait, There's Even More

If that's not enough for you, check out Wikipedia's list of Cultural Depictions of Vincent van Gogh (Musical - Popular). If you find any other Vincent van Gogh related gems, please post links in the comments!

Everything You Need to Know About Record Store Day

The unlikely resurgence of vinyl as an alternative to digital music formats is made up of more than just a small subculture of purists. Today, more than 1400 independent record stores deal in both vintage and current releases. Those store owners and community supporters created Record Store Day in 2007 as a way of celebrating the grassroots movement that’s allowed a once-dying medium to thrive.

To commemorate this year’s Record Store Day on Saturday, April 21, a number of stores (a searchable list can be found here) will be offering promotional items, live music, signings, and more. While events vary widely by store, a number of artists will be issuing exclusive LPs that will be distributed around the country.

For Grateful Dead fans, a live recording of a February 27, 1969 show at Fillmore West in San Francisco will be released and limited to 6700 copies; Arcade Fire’s 2003 EP album will see a vinyl release for the first time, limited to 3000 copies; "Roxanne," the Police single celebrating its 40th anniversary this year, will see a 7-inch single release with the original jacket art.

The day also promises to be a big one for David Bowie fans. A special white vinyl version of 1977’s Bowie Now will be on shelves, along with Welcome to the Blackout (Live London ’78), a previously-unreleased, three-record set. Jimmy Page, Frank Zappa, Neil Young, and dozens of other artists will also be contributing releases.

No store is likely to carry everything you might want, so before making the stop, it might be best to call ahead and then plan on getting there early. If you’re one of the unlucky vinyl supporters without a brick and mortar store nearby, you can check out, which will be selling the special releases online.

Henson Company
Pop Culture
Jim Henson's Labyrinth Is Being Adapted Into a Stage Musical
Henson Company
Henson Company

More than 30 years after its cinematic debut, Labyrinth could be hitting the stage. In an interview with Forbes, Jim Henson's son and Henson Company CEO Brian Henson shared plans to transform the cult classic into a live musical.

While the new musical would be missing David Bowie in his starring role as Jareth the Goblin King, it would hopefully feature the soundtrack Bowie helped write. Brian Henson says there isn't a set timeline for the project yet, but the stage adaptation of the original film is already in the works.

As for a location, Henson told Forbes he envisions it running, "Not necessarily [on] Broadway, it could be for London's West End, but it will be a stage show, a big theatrical version. It’s very exciting."

Labyrinth premiered in 1986 to measly box office earnings and tepid reviews, but Jim Henson's fairytale has since grown into a phenomenon beloved by nostalgic '80s kids and younger generations alike. In the same Forbes interview, Brian Henson also confirmed the 2017 news that a long-anticipated Labyrinth sequel is apparently in development. Though he couldn't give any specifics, Henson confirmed that, "we are still excited about it but the process moves very slowly and very carefully. We're still excited about the idea of a sequel, we are working on something, but nothing that's close enough to say it's about to be in pre-production or anything like that."

While fans eagerly await those projects to come out, they can get their fix when the film returns to theaters across the U.S. on April 29, May 1, and May 2. Don't forget to wear your best Labyrinth swag to the event.

[h/t Forbes]


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