Wednesday, August 11, 2010

It's just an autograph...

I'll be the first to admit that I've never been star struck. My mind always wanders to 'I wish I could have met' (Fill in the blank with a dead musician here), but rarely wanting to meet a high profile band.

When people come to visit me and peruse through my collection, they are always shocked at just how many signed LP's and CD's I have. Some of them I have purchased this way, though many have been from striking up a conversation with a band, often months if not years before they 'made it big'. To me an autographed album is another notch on the items history. The autograph may bring the value up quite a bit, it is the story associated with the autograph that is exciting. Below are some of my autographs for you to peruse at your leisure. Though I have many more signed albums, hopefully the stories associated with these items will show why I have selected them.

The Dears will never make it big. With music that's too avant-garde for the average radio station, not avant garde enough for Zappa or Bungle fans, they have never found an audience. I adore their arrangements. I have seen them 13 times, and here are a few fully autographed items from their tours (6 members can be tough to track down after a show!) They are from Montreal, Canada, and their performances are legendary in the Canadian alt-rock scene.

I own 17 items autographed by Metallica. Having been a Metallica completest for as long as I have been collecting, having a slew of autographed items from each of their line-ups is a must. Though I am not going to post each and every item I have autographed of theres, here are a few that excite me to no end. The first is the Greek pressing of ...And Justice For All. It is a tough pressing to find, let alone fully autographed by the Jason line up.

This is a 7" single from ...And Justice titled Eye of the Beholder. This was when they started using legendary punk artist PUSHEAD to do their t-shirts and merchandise. This cover features mock-ups of each of their eyes, and each member of Metallica signed their own eye! The final signature is my ticket stub from when I briefly met Lars after my third time seeing them in 2004. It was my first Metallica autograph, and it means the world to me. Check out my Sister site:

Anthrax joins Metallica is my collection of Thrash Metal autographs. Anthrax, Metallica, Megadeth and Slayer collectively comprise what fans and critiques have coined as 'the big four'; The originators of Thrash. 'Persistence of Time' and 'Among the Living' are my two favourite Anthrax albums, and though I did not get these signed personally, finding them signed by the original line-up is tough. Joey Belladonna is the original signer for Anthrax, and is widely considered more creative than many Thrash front men who have since lead the genre. Josh Bush replaced Joey in the 90's and performed on their semi alternative album 'Volume 8: The Threat is Real'. Though this was a departure from their classic sound, it's still worth checking out.

When it comes to Electronica I have always been drawn to the originators of the field(Tangerine Dream, Vangelis, Claus Shultz,). The 90's saw a slew of electronic-oriented bands arriving as household names, and artists like Fat Boy Slim, The Chemical Brothers and The Crystal Method earned their due credit. Seen is a fully autographed double 12" single by The Crystal Method titled 'Community Service II'. I was originally drawn to this single because of their unique interpretation of New Order's 'Bizarre Love Triangle'. Though The Crystal Method only has two members, this album features 3 autographs! Ken Jordan signed it twice, as the first signing didn't turn out the way he liked. You would be shocked to find out how often an artist does this.

Flo Mournier from Cryptopsy comes in as one of the few CD's you will find on this blog. For those interested in Death, Tech-Death, or Early Grind, Canadian Cryptopsy were early pioneers of these genres, mainly thanks to Flo. Flo is the fastest drummer I have ever seen, and I got this cover and insert autographed by him at a clinic he delivered in Kingston, Ontario of all places. 'Once Was Not' was the last album with their singer 'Lord Worm', and many consider this to mark the end of Cryptopsy's career (Subsequent releases got, well, 'New Metal'). On this album Flo plays so fast that his double bass notes blend together to sound like wind. A must have, even for the novelty!

Nothing says Hardcore like EARTH CRISIS! As bands began experimenting with the crossover genre 'hardcore' (A mixture of Metal and Punk), few have lasted as long as Earth Crisis. This Vegan, Strait Edge band from Syracuse just reunited 2 years back to release a LP and tour extensively. Here are three 45's I got them to sign when I met them this past March. The band were extremely friendly, and their willingness to speak to fans speaks volumes on their character. Earth Crisis' dedication to their music and lifestyle is inspiring, and any fan of this genre should at least give them a listen.

I have a love/hate relationship with Dream Theater. I love them because they are talented. Graduates from both Berkeley and Juliard, Dream Theater have risen to the top of Progressive Metal's field by creating a new breed of accessible, yet technically brilliant music. Though their latest album (Black Clouds and Silver Linings) was a huge let down, Train of Thought, Scene from a memory, and Awake still remain some of my favourite albums from this Genre. My main qualm with D.T. is their lack of ability to demonstrate a point in less then 10 minutes. This fully autographed CD comes from the their tour of 'Train of Thought' and contains plenty of variations of classic studio tracks. I got this signed before a Toronto show 3 years back; still one of my favourite sets of sigs. Very nice guys as well!

I hate Weezer. I have never liked their music, their image, nor their spastic bat with popularity. I do love the look of these sigs on this LP, though! If anyone has their Blue Album, the only Weezer LP I like, I would gladly trade this fully autographed LP for an original Blue (autographed, or not).

This fully signed album by The Tea Party was luckily found at a local CD shop in Toronto for 7 bucks! The signatures look so good they might have mistaken them for a print (Hence the price!) I have always wondered how at item like this ends up in a CD store. Obviously it was sold to the store for less than $7, or the store wouldn't have made a profit on it. At one point a fan was so enthralled by the band that they decided to stick around after a show for a set of autographs. A few years later this album was worth less that $5 bucks to them.

Mike Patton is a musician that deserves the respect that he never received. Ex-singer of alt Metal band Faith No More, Patton has continued to wow his fans by his vast array of vocal stylings, by fronting Fantomas, Mr. Bungle, 3 Solo albums, Peeping Tom, The Dillinger Escape Plan, Tomahawk, The Executioners, as well as guest sang on over 100 albums from bands ranging from Jazz to Death Metal, or from Punk to Noise-core. Here is a ticket stub including Patton and Buzz Osborne's(of the Melvin's) autograph, both as they were in Fantomas. Slayer Drummer Dave Lombardo was around, but wasn't really in the signing mood so I settled for a quick chat about his drumming. Mike Patton is a singer that anyone interested in music should be keen on checking out.

Perhaps if there is enough interest I will do a part two to this post in time, as I do have plenty more items to showcase. Thanks for reading.

1 comment:

  1. Thanks for sharing the John Hancock stories. We enjoyed em'.