Various Artists: The Record Man – A Tribute To Ron Kane US DL/CD 
- Tony Backhouse, Pieter Bon, Fane Flaws, Peter Dasent, & Paul Scott: The Record Man
- Suely Mesquita & Marcos Kuzka Cunha: Greatest Cheeseburger
- Paul Scott: Unpopular Music
- Henk Hofstede, Tom America, & Marco Raaphorst: White Car, Blue Ocean
- Yamée Couture, Petite Celine: Francophonies
- Hans Croon: Human Heart (How can the human heart occur in the universe?)
- Bob Gaulke: Better
- Pieter Bon, Marco Raaphorst: Wat Betekent Het?
- Fay Lovsky: I’m Running
- Andrew McLennan, Peri Mason: Today’s List
- Fane Flaws: Ron Kane
- Mark Moerman, Ace Farren Ford: Manatees from Other Galaxies
After my friend Ron died last November, there was the inevitable follow-up among his friends. With no funeral, talk pointed to a get together among his many music pals which will be called Ron-Kon II, after the original Ron-Kon, held on his 50th birthday, in 2008. I little while ago it was set for the weekend of July 28th in Los Angeles. I will be attending with my friends chasinvictoria and Mr. Ware, the guy who introduced me to Ron. There will be a record store crawl and no doubt some pub action that teetotaler me won’t fully participate in.
I had also heard from chasinvictoria that there would be a Ron Kane Tribute album coming, but exactly how this would manifest was a mystery to me. Would it be musician friends interpreting songs from the Ron Kane cannon [he was the lynchpin of L.A. experimentalists The Decayes], or would it be musical tributes to the man? As of yesterday, now we know. This morning I saw a message from chasinvictoria describing the album, which is now for sale digitally, with a CD hard copy to follow around the time of Ron-Kon II, according to chasinvictoria.
How strange this is to have musicians, many of whom are known to me simply because I knew Ron Kane, having produced a tribute album to my dead friend. It’s a little surreal from where I’m sitting! When I heard of this I wondered if people I’m a huge fan of like Henk Hofstede of The Nits would be involved and he certainly is. I figured it would be a given that members of MAM like Pieter Bon and Tom America would get involved since they even had Ron perform a track on one of their albums. Pieter and his partner came over to the first Ron-Kon and performed music for the assembled masses during the big party. This fervent American fan of sub-underground Netherlander pop music apparently got noticed. Actually, he tended to travel abroad and seek these musicians out!But the artists I’m familiar with don’t stop there. Since I knew Ron, how could I not know of artists like Fane Flaws [New Zealand polymath] or Fay Lovsky [Netherlands]? Heck, I own Lovsky records solely due to Ron importing them to The States! So this album certainly has my name on it. It’s in iTunes now and Bandcamp for the DL but I will be waiting for the CD. After all… what would Ron have said about buying a download?
But the story doesn’t end with this Bandcamp player. There is more on the web about this project as Ron had a wide orbit in this musical world. MAM guitarist Marco Raaphorst played on the album and has written an article about it here. There has been a single released from “The Record Man” with “Human Heart” by Hans Croon, who has written a fascinating blog on how he came to this project, here. And finally, there is a podcast about this album…but you will need to be fluent in Dutch to understand it. Which is probably exactly how Ron would have wanted it. It hurts me that Ron could not live to see this fascinating work his friends have done in his memory, but that’s part of the territory of tribute albums, I suppose. As an arch record collector [I’m just a wet-nosed punk, by comparison], I can say that he certainly would have been eating this up with a spoon were he among the living right now.
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