Wednesday, July 22, 2015

Monday, July 20, 2015

Rev. Branch Sings the Velvet Underground



As another sneak preview of his new album, enjoy Rev. Branch's heartfelt interpretation of the Lou Reed composition "Jesus," originally recorded by the Velvet Underground in 1967. This stirring rendition appears on Rev. Branch's LP, I've Got Heaven on My Mind, now available on CD and download.

Rev. Branch frequently asks for song recommendations, and the Velvet Underground's "Jesus" was a composition I thought might speak to him. Though Rev. Branch is 84, he's never followed rock or popular music, and the Velvet Underground (and the song's composer, the late Lou Reed) were new to him. Still, he recognized a familiar dynamic at work in the songand in his covering the track. As he explains in the liner notes of the new CD:

"With this song, rock and roll took the message from the Christian family, and made rock and roll out of it. But when I was a little boy on Bayou Black, we got our radio broadcasts from TennesseeNashville. (In those days, we didn't have much radio in Louisiana.) We took what they called hillbilly songs and changed 'em around our way, made them spiritual songs. We put 'em together.

"It seemed to me that's what I was praying when I was 3 or 4 years old: Help me in my weakness...and right down the line."

The album was recorded and mixed by Todd Burke (Fitz and the Tantrums, Ben Harper) and was produced by Wyatt Doyle of New Texture and Yeti's Mike McGonigal.

Join Rev. Branch for a live performance to celebrate the release of the CD at the Heavenly Rainbow this Sunday, July 26 at 3:30 pm. For more details and to RSVP, visit the event page on Facebook. Copies of the CD will be available for purchase at the event.

Out-of-towners can order copies of the CD here: bit.ly/RevBCD

Watch "Rest," another clip from I've Got Heaven on My Mind, here.



Wednesday, July 15, 2015

Friday, July 10, 2015

From Rev. Branch's new CD: "Rest"


I first heard Rev. Branch in the 1990s. I was living in Hollywood, where his signal barely reached. On a late night crawl through the AM band, I landed on what sounded like some ethereal border radio broadcast: A lone guitar buzzed, crowed and sighed a rudimentary progression looped like a mantra. The raw, shouted voice of the singer sounded distant and disembodied, bleeding in from another room. A low whistle of interference drifted in and out in ghostly accompaniment. At times the broadcast faded entirely into aural snowdrift, only to gradually re-emerge. What I heard had the timeless quality of a field recording, with aspects of the cut-up tape experiments of Burroughs/Gysin. It was like nothing I’d stumbled across previously on the radio. I was transfixed.

Rev. Branch’s Rainbow Gospel Hour could be heard on KTYM-AM out of Inglewood for over 40 years, financed with income Rev. Branch earned from his trade as a barber. Rev. Branch assembled each program with care, using the tools he had. Initially Rev. Branch accompanied himself on guitar, even self-releasing a handful of now-prized gospel singles in the 1960s as "Ray Branch and his Guitar." But in the last few decades, arthritis has meant putting down the guitar. For some time he played the Omnichord, an instrument similar to an electronic autoharp. Currently he plays a QChord, a next-generation Omnichord with an ethereal character.

With a portable, dual tape deck boom box perched on the podium of the Heavenly Rainbow Baptist Church in South Los Angeles, he’d dub in and out of previous episodes, recycling cassettes. He'd record performances live to tape, timing inserts by the second hand of the clock on the church wall. Ghosts of previous recordings inevitably bled through, adding sonic texture and patina that would only become more layered and enigmatic once transmitted by KTYM’s diminished after-hours broadcast signal. (KTYM powered down its signal after midnight and lowered its airtime fees accordingly, making late-night hours affordable.)

Even Rev. Branch couldn’t always say for certain exactly who was tuning in at 3 am on Sunday mornings, though he began each show with the welcome, “This program is designed for the sick and shut-in…in the sanitariums, hospitals, and penal institutions. We want you to know that we love you! And we care for you.”

After a historic 43 years, Rev. Branch was surely among the longest serving broadcasters in Los Angeles radio; four decades on air is a rare achievement by any criteria, But Rev. Branch retired the Rainbow Gospel Hour in 2014 without fanfare when KTYM announced plans to change ownership and format. He remains active, and today, at 84, he continues to hold a musical service every Sunday, and keeps daily hours at the church building assisting the community, welcoming all who arrive at the Heavenly Rainbow’s door.

I love Rev. Branch's music, and I'm constantly inspired by his tireless efforts on behalf of the community, and by his no-nonsense, D.I.Y. approach to life, music, and helping each other out. I'm proud to be a part of releasing this new collection. I’ve Got Heaven on My Mind, his debut full-length release, and his first in high fidelity. was recorded and mixed by Todd Burke (Fitz and the Tantrums, Ben Harper) at the Heavenly Rainbow. The twelve tracks include a selection of hymns and spirituals that will be familiar to longtime listeners of the Rainbow Gospel Hour, as well as Rev. Branch’s stirring new interpretation of “Jesus,” written by Lou Reed and originally recorded by the Velvet Underground in 1967.

We’ll be celebrating the album’s release with a musical service and celebration at the Heavenly Rainbow on Sunday, July 26 at 3:30 pm. First copies of the disc will be available there, but out-of-towners can purchase copies of the CD here and the download edition here. Sales benefit the Heavenly Rainbow and Rev. Branch’s continued good works there.

—Wyatt Doyle

Here’s a preview from the album, the poignant “Rest.”

Wednesday, July 8, 2015

Wednesday, July 1, 2015

Wednesday, June 24, 2015

Wednesday, June 17, 2015

Wednesday, June 10, 2015

Wednesday, June 3, 2015

Wednesday, May 27, 2015

Saturday, May 23, 2015

Free Download: BATTLE CRY #1 (December 1955)


Men's Adventure Library editor Bob Deis's MensPulpMags.com is offering a free download of Battle Cry's historic first issue from December 1955.

Click here for Deis's essay and download link..

Friday, May 22, 2015

Wednesday, May 20, 2015

Wednesday, May 13, 2015

Thursday, May 7, 2015

Wyatt Doyle & David Coleman talk CRYPTO!



Tomorrow -- Friday, May 8 -- Cryptozoology Anthology editors Wyatt Doyle and David Coleman join host Jeffery Pritchett for a talk on the Church of Mabus program.

Listen live here: http://churchofmabusradio.com/

Cryptozoology Anthology is available now in paperback and limited edition hardcover with bonus content.

Wednesday, May 6, 2015

Wednesday, April 29, 2015

Wednesday, April 22, 2015

Wednesday, April 15, 2015

Wednesday, April 8, 2015

Thursday, April 2, 2015

Nicholas Pike, DEVIL MAY CALL, and the Wheelharp



Composer Nicholas Pike demonstrates the Wheelharp, playing his theme from Devil May Call.

Devil May Call is directed by Jason Cuadrado, from an original screenplay by Cuadrado and New Texture's Wyatt Doyle. It's available now on DVD and VOD from Lionsgate.


Wednesday, April 1, 2015

CRYPTOZOOLOGY ANTHOLOGY Available in Paperback and Limited Edition Hardcover!



cryptozoology (n.) The search for and study of animals whose existence or survival is unsubstantiated or in dispute, such as Sasquatch, the Loch Ness Monster, fish with human hands, the Yeti, the Thunderbird, the Ape-Man Monster of Tennessee, and the 'Thing' at Dutchman's Rig. 

For three decades, when American men had questions about the Yeti, the Loch Ness Monster, Bigfoot, and other weird beasts from the strange world of cryptozoology, they found answers in the hard-hitting pages of men's adventure magazines. 

Now, collected here for the first time ever, are samples of sensational period reporting and wild, "true" accounts of savage, fist-to-claw duels between man and Sasquatch, man and fishman, man and monster! Plus full-color vintage pulp artwork that accompanied the stories' original publication, rare archival discoveries, men's pulp history, expert analysis, cryptid-by-cryptid commentary, and much, much more. 

This latest installment in the Men's Adventure Library is edited by Robert Deis of MensPulpMags.com, David Coleman (The Bigfoot Filmography) and Wyatt Doyle (Stop Requested), and includes contributions from luminaries such as Sir Arthur C. Clarke, John Keel, and many others. 

Cryptozoology Anthology is packed with 13 biting tales of creatures notorious and obscure, and the limited hardcover includes bonus material exclusive to that edition, including an additional wild story rescued from obscurity. Don't leave civilization without it!

Available NOW in paperback and limited edition hardcover.


copyright © 2014, 2015 Wyatt Doyle

Sunday, March 29, 2015

TRUTHers Wanted.



"Josh Alan Friedman has chops like a wolf. The French had a phrase for his tropism for the seedy, the gutter, the outcasts: nostalgie de la boue. This book deserves wide attention." --Jerry Wexler, co-founder of Atlantic Records 

"A can't-put-it-down rock 'n' roll read ... a must for any fan of good music writing and great storytelling." --William Michael Smith, Houston Press 

"He dances off the page, improvises, hits all the grace notes. He knows the turfspeak of both showbiz and quality lit." --Michael Simmons, High Times 

"The architects and the artists, the legends and the liars, the famously acclaimed and the anonymously unsung... each one a delectable bit of voyeurism." 
--PopMatters 

Jerry Leiber. Doc Pomus. Ronnie SpectorDr. John. Mose Allison. David "Fathead" Newman. Keith Ferguson. Tommy Shannon. Joel Dorn. Cornell Dupree. Sam Myers. Andrew Baxter Jr. Rick Sikes & the Rhythm Rebels

The classic collection by Josh Alan Friedman returns in a big new edition from Wyatt Doyle Books/New Texture. 

Back in print in a new, definitive edition, this unflinching, critically acclaimed collection by Black Cracker author Josh Alan Friedman gets up close and personal with some of the most important and unsung figures in 20th century blues and rock 'n' roll. From household names to the unacknowledged architects behind both the unforgettable sounds and the multi-billion-dollar industry, here are music's big winners and tragic losses; the self-made, the self-serving, and the self-destructive. Friedman captures intimate insights, unearths secret histories, and shines a light on parts of the music business most prefer not to talk about. 


An antidote to antiseptic cultural mythologizing, Tell the Truth Until They Bleed is show business without the showbiz. After too many years out of circulation, Truth is back.

Available NOW in paperback, ebook, and limited edition hardcover.

Wednesday, March 25, 2015

Monday, March 23, 2015

Josh Alan Friedman Brings TRUTH to the Wildcatter!



The new, definitive edition of Tell the Truth Until They Bleed premieres this month in paperback, ebook, and as a limited edition hardcover. Truth's release coincides with Josh Alan's Wildcatter Exchange appearance at Landers Machine Shop (207 E Broadway Ave., Fort Worth 76104) this Saturday, March 28th at 4 p.m.

For the full schedule of events, visit the Wildcatter Exchange's website, here.

 

Thursday, March 19, 2015

In a dream I had last night

I was on a high floor in a small skyscraper when what seemed like a tremendous gust blew the top floor off the building. There was a large group of us in a big, open room a few floors down. We were trying to figure out what had happened when the whole building felt like it was knocked over in one piece. Somehow it didn’t affect our equilibrium, but we all knew it was the end. From a corner, Bob Dylan took out a guitar and started to sing; a presumptuous gesture, I thought. Maybe there were people there who didn’t want Bob Dylan to be the last thing they ever heard. It occurred to me then that the whole thing may have somehow been Dylan’s plot, and I considered the idea that we were in a high-tech video game or virtual reality he had authored.

The building fell through the air for some time, as if from a great height. Inside, we awaited our demise. But looking out a window, it appeared the building might land in the middle of a wide river, and that’s exactly what happened. The impact will kill us, I thought; but it didn’t. The building will sink and we’ll drown within minutes, I figured; but we floated easily, following the current. I climbed out a window, and walked to the top of the building, the prow of our ark. I took a seat, my legs dangling.

At once I could see we were closing fast on the ledge of an enormous, surging waterfall, five or more times the height of our building. The current guided the prone building across the waterfall’s threshold cleanly, the top floors of effortlessly gliding into the open air, projecting over the drop like a diving board. The view was dizzying. As our vessel began to tip over the falls, I raised my arms rollercoaster high and at the top of my lungs yelled, “YAHOO!”


 
text/photo copyright © 2015 Wyatt Doyle

Wednesday, March 18, 2015