In July 1992 American poet Jack Micheline paid a brief visit to The Netherlands for a couple of poetry readings and a show of his gouaches. During this trip Micheline travelled down to The Hague, where his gouaches were being framed and a poetry reading had been programmed. One of Micheline’s favourite hangouts during his stay in that town was the famous Italian coffee and ice-cream parlour ‘Florencia’, which in atmosphere reminded him of the North Beach neighbourhood in his hometown San Francisco. The ice-cream parlour and its clientele of all walks of life inspired Micheline to write his poem ‘At The Florencia’. A live reading of the poem, in which Florencia’s clients are portrayed and their names and nicknames americanised, followed shortly after at a beach café in Scheveningen. The poem has all the hallmarks of a Micheline poem. The streets hold universal truths and beauty for those with eyes to see: Joe Krug sits and smiles/with his gray eyes/Cruiser Kling/has seven rings/The baby has bright eyes/he crawls on the bench/outside the Florencia.
Counter Culture Chronicles has published At The Florencia as a fine hand numbered limited edition. A plain brown envelope with a colour photo of Florencia glued to it contains a facsimile print on green paper of the poem in Micheline’s handwriting and a second print of the poem in typeface. The envelope also contains a xerox of the invitation to Micheline’s show in Amsterdam in 1992 with a photo by Eddie Woods and a short accompanying text to this edition on the reverse side. Order
Slowscan #41 now available from Sea Urchin:
You & I is a collaboration of Jan Henderikse and partner-in-crime Alexandra Phillips, a young American artist who currently lives in The Netherlands. Released by Slowscan as vol. 41, one side of this 10” black vinyl edition consists of a collage of the word you culled from all sorts of existing records, and a collage of the word I on the flip side. You & I is a beautiful piece of work with an iron inner logic and a warm sense of humour. The 10” comes with an insert by Pure Propaganda, a magazine run by Henderikse and Phillips. You & I. Always.
MARITIME NOIR is a poetic effort to meditate on Freedom, knowing that Freedom will never come…
The 5-track CD opens with Bert Papenfuß’s poem ‘Es gibt keine Freiheit’ read in Rex Joswig’s dark and mesmerising voice and set to music by Joswig’s band Herbst In Peking. Once the hawsers of this Moloko Plus release have been cast, the listener finds himself seabound on a voyage to an ever-receding horizon. Accompanied by the sounds of seagulls and submarine sonars the slow voyage leads from ‘We are instruments’ to ‘U-Boot nach Jerusalem’ and to Tom van Alp’s remix of HIP’s classic ’Shame’, only to return to an instrumental version of the opening track. Sure enough, freedom may never come, but this dark and attractive HIP release is a convincing invitation to keep setting sail for its shores.
Herbst In Peking, named after Boris Vian’s novel, was formed by Rex Joswig in East Berlin in 1987. The anti-authoritarian stance and fierce criticism of the GDR regime of this punk band led to an official ban in 1989. While Rex Joswig ran his Grenzpunkt Null radio show from East Berlin after the GDR had collapsed, his band steadily assimilated influences from Dub, Industrial and Electronic Music. HIP’s line-up has changed over the years with Joswig as a constant member and their collaboration with Moloko Plus productive to this day. → order now
Slowscan’s Vol. 40 is a silkscreened wooden box containing seven 7” records with compositions by Fluxus related artists – each record hand numbered – plus an information sheet. Sea Urchin sells the remaining copies of this exquisite edition with recordings of:
• Albert Fine’s ‘Fear No Forks’ (1965, performed and recorded in 2017)
• George Brecht’s ‘Drip Music/Dripping’ (1959-62, performed by Al Hansen, 1993)
• Joe Jones’s ’Solar Music Hot House’ (recorded in 1988)
• Ken Friedman’s ‘Zen For Record’ (1966)
• Charles Amirkhanian’s ‘The Type Without Time’(1979)
• Adriano Spatola/Gian Paolo Roffi – Autoroute (1988), side A
• Adriano Spatola/F. Tiziano – Al Capone Poem (1979), side B
• Pauline Oliveros’s ‘World Ear Project’ (1971)
The Albert M. Fine and Ken Friedman records include an insert. Edition of 100 copies numbered 31/150 to 130/150. Design Johnny Van de Koolwijk. → ORDER
A year before he put a .44 Magnum to his head, American author and poet Richard Brautigan visited Amsterdam at the invitation of the One World Poetry festival, of which Dutch poet Harry Hoogstraten was an organiser. Brautigan (1935-1984) was already in a bad shape when he delivered a very brief performance at the festival and antagonised his audience. His alcohol addiction and years of depression were beginning to take their toll. Brautigan soon left for Mallorca but returned to Amsterdam a couple of months later, where he stayed in a hotel through January and February 1984, his wheels of creativity stuck in the mud of depression and addiction. Brautigan’s mood only improved when Harry Hoogstraten looked him up and joined him in his drinking bouts. Together they explored the city of Amsterdam on foot, drank mescal and visited bookstores and markets. Hoogstraten even managed to shake Brautigan from his creative death and together they produced seven improvised drawings, which Hoogstraten kept in his archives after Brautigan left for Japan and put an end to his life later that year. René van der Voort’s Counter Culture Chronicles has now dug up the seven drawings from Hoogstraaten’s archive and published them as a limited edition of 35 copies. → Order