Thursday, August 7, 2008
Ry Cooder's mid-century Los Angeles trilogy
I've only been a couple of times in short stretches but I rather love Los Angeles, a most non-European of American cities, and there is a scrappy beauty in that.
These albums are about music he listened to on the radio growing up there, learning to play guitar from hillbilly and Mexican radio shows and wishing he could make the 45-minute trek across the city to see Ray Price. They are also about UFOs, Communism, cars and drunks. These records are dense, sprawling and as corny as they are weird - a lot like Los Angeles itself.
He did a lovely interview in Rolling Stone about all this and more that you can read here.