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Gary Lucas

When Gary Lucas was nine, his dad suggested he take up playing the guitar. Although he followed his dad's suggestion, Lucas focused more on the French horn that he played for his elementary-school band, and continued to play that instrument until getting kicked out of his high-school band. Lucas then focused wholly on the guitar, and played in various groups throughout the '60s. As a campus station music director during his second year at Yale, Lucas saw Captain Beefheart in concert and immediately wanted to play with Beefheart's unique band more than anything. Shortly thereafter, he interviewed and got to know Beefheart.

Lucas soon performed as a soloist in the European premiere of Bernstein's Mass (From the Liturgy of the Roman Mass) (1973), and after graduating from college, moved to Taipei for two years. During that time, he led a locally popular group, the O-Bay-Gone-Band, until a chaotic 1976 show broke out in a brawl that seriously injured many people. Upset, Lucas promptly returned to the States, hooked back up with Beefheart, and was finally invited to join the band. He appears on Doc at the Radar Station, and was a full member of the group by the time of the Ice Cream for Crow album. After Beefheart retired in the early '80s to pursue painting, Lucas couldn't imagine topping his experience of playing in a group he considered the number one avant-garde rock band in the world, so he switched over to the production end of music, producing albums by Peter Gordon and Tim Berne, among others.

In 1988, Lucas returned to live performance with a highly acclaimed solo set at N.Y.C.'s Knitting Factory, and continued to play shows and tour for more than a decade to follow. Shortly after his return, he collaborated with longtime friend Walter Horn on a score for The Golem (a 1920 German Expressionist film) as a commission for the 1989 Brooklyn Academy of Music Next Wave Festival. That same year, Lucas formed his rock band Gods and Monsters. Over time, the band's lineups included Jeff Buckley and Matthew Sweet. By 1999, the Gods and Monsters lineup was in trio form with ex-Swans drummer Jonathan Kane and former Modern Lovers bassist Ernie Brooks; the LP Improve the Shining Hour appeared in early 2000. But there was other activity as well.

In addition to Gods and Monsters, Lucas formed the Du-Tels in 1994, a psychedelic folk duo with Peter Stampfel, and recorded the solo album Bad Boys of the Arctic for Enemy. He followed it in 1996 with a solo acoustic guitar album entitled Evangeline. Lucas released Busy Being Born for Tzadik in 1998, followed by Street of Lost Brothers, another project for the label, in 2000. He collaborated with lutist and electronic musician Jozef Van Wissem on two albums, Diplopia and The Universe of Absence, issued in 2003 and 2004, respectively. Coming Clean, a Gods and Monsters release, appeared in 2006.

In 2008, Beyond the Pale, credited to Gary Lucas vs. the Dark Poets (the electronic British soundtrack duo), appeared on Some Bizarre. That same year, Rishte, a collaborative album with vocalist Najma Akhtar, appeared, and he joined with jazz and blues vocalist Dean Bowman to form Chase the Devil. The duo explored the spiritual and secular roots of the blues and released the self-titled Chase the Devil on Knitting Factory in 2009. Lucas was back with Gods and Monsters for The Ordeal of Civility, produced by Jerry Harrison and released by Knitting Factory in 2011.

In 2012, Gary Lucas Plays Bohemian Classics -- solo acoustic arrangements of Czech composers -- was issued in the Czech Republic. In 2013, Lucas released Cinefantastique on Northern Spy, a collection of film scores he performed solo, and published a memoir, Touched by Grace: My Time with Jeff Buckley. He also recorded a collaborative album with British singer and songwriter Peter Hammill, co-founder of Van der Graaf Generator. Co-billed, the album entitled Other World was issued by Esoteric in early 2014. ~ Joslyn Layne, Steve Leggett & Thom Jurek
full bio

Selected Discography

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Track List: Cinefantastique

1. Mon Oncle

2. Monsierur Hulot's Holiday

3. Casino Yorale

4. The Man Who Shot Liberty Valance

5. "Bali Ha'i" From South Pacific

6. J'accuse

7. Satango

8. Our Love Is Here To Stay' From And American Paris

9. Vertigo/ Psychp

10. Fellini's Casanova/ Lullaby From Rosemary;S Baby

11. Spanish Dracula

12. Aguirre, The Wrath Of God

13. Sex And Lucia

14. Howdy Doody Time

15. Entr'acte

16. Charlie Borwn

17. Around The World In 80 Days

x

Track List: The Edge Of Heaven

1. Old Dreams

2. Please Allow Me To Look At You Again

3. The Mad World

4. The Wall

5. If I'm Without You

6. Night In Shanghai

7. Where Is My Home

8. Songstress On The Edge Of Heaven

9. I Wait For Your Return

10. Pretense

11. The Moon In The Street

12. The Wall (Instrumental)

13. Please Allow Me To Look At You Again (Instrumental)

14. A Pair Of Flowers (Instrumental)

15. Songstress On The Edge Of Heaven (Live)

x

Track List: Rise Up To Be

1. Rise Up To Be

2. And You Will

3. Fool's Cap

4. Cantina

5. Ghosts (Live)

x

Track List: Level the Playing Field: Early HurlyBurly 1988 - 1994

1. Vampire Circus

2. Skin the Rabbit

3. Dream of a Russian Princess

4. Let's Go Swimming

5. Poison Tree

6. Out From Under

7. Jack Johnson / Ghostrider

8. Exit, Pursued By a Bear

9. The Brain From Planet Eros

10. Jericho

11. The Crazy Ray

12. Whip Named Lash

13. After Strange Gods

x

Track List: Monsters From the Id (Rarities and Verities)

1. Ultra Shark

2. Don't Let the B**tards Wear You Down

3. Deboraarobed

4. The Devil's Gotta Move Along

5. Woke Up This Morning (Theme from "The Sopranos" (Live)

6. Handful of Gimme

7. Theme from "Eastenders"

8. The Stumble

9. Autobahn (Live)

10. Third World Two (Live)

11. Comicosmics (Live)

12. Bra Joe from Kilimanjaro (Live)

13. Adir Hu/Rock of Ages

14. State Trooper (Live Tribute to Bruce Springsteen)

x

Track List: Gods and Monsters

1. Glo-Worm

2. Skin the Rabbit

3. Poison Tree

4. Jack Johnson/Ghostrider

5. Whip Named Lash

6. Fool's Cap

7. Astronomy Dominé

8. The Brain from Planet Eros

9. Dream of a Russian Princess

10. The Crazy Ray

11. King Strong

x

Track List: Skeleton at the Feast

1. Strong Seed

2. Guerillas in the Midst

3. Robert's Johnson

4. Hard Werken F**ked Over Man - The Reckoning

5. Hugh's Graveyard Stomp

6. Hitchcocked

7. Tompkins Square Dance

8. Christmas in Space: Bells - Little Drummer Boyee - Are You Experienced? (Christmas in Space Medley)

9. Aguirre - The Sheep Look Up

10. Scud Patrol - Flux et Veritas

11. Syd's Dream

12. Music for "The Golem"- Main title - Rabbi Loew Consults the Star - The Decree (Music for the Golem)

13. The Junker and the Jewess (Music for the Golem)

14. Creation of the Clay Man - Astaroth (Music for the Golem)

15. The Golem Walks with Famulus (Music for the Golem)

16. The Festival of the Roses (Music for the Golem)

17. In the Synagogue - The Vision of the Patriarchs (Music for the Golem)

18. Go Go Golem (Music for the Golem)

x

Track List: Evangeline

1. The Animal Flesh Comes Creeping Back

2. Evangeline (Demo)

3. Wedding March

4. The Wall

5. Apismatisin'

6. Overture To "Tannhauser"

7. Sail Up

8. Ah Feel Like Ah Syd

9. The Songstress On The Edge Of Heaven

10. A Wandering Minstrel Eye

11. Police Dog Blues

12. The Animal Flesh (Slight Return)

13. "Judgement At Midnight" Suite

14. Interstellar Low Ways

15. Cool Hand Luke

x

Track List: Bad Boys of the Arctic

1. After Strange Gods

2. Poison I.V. League

3. Jericho

4. Childrens' March - Over The Hills And Far Away

5. Exit, Pursued By A Bear

6. I Want To Play Your Guitar

7. They Can't Believe He's Risen Again

8. Out From Under

9. Let's Go Swimming

10. The Nightmare Of History

11. Vampire Circus

12. Cantina

x

Track List: Coming Clean

1. One's Man Meat (feat. David Johansen & Gods and Monsters)

2. Coming Clean (feat. Gods and Monsters)

3. Under My Wing (feat. Gods and Monsters)

4. Fata Morgana (feat. Gods and Monsters)

5. Spirit Moves (feat. Gods and Monsters)

6. Skin Diving (feat. Elli Medeiros & Gods and Monsters)

7. Evangeline (feat. Gods and Monsters)

8. Follow (feat. Gods and Monsters)

9. Hurly Burly (feat. Gods and Monsters)

10. Land's End (feat. Richard Barone & Gods and Monsters)

11. Mojo Pin (feat. Michael Schoen & Gods and Monsters)

12. Psycho (feat. Gods and Monsters)

13. Ain't Got You (feat. Gods and Monsters) (Bonus Track)

14. Dream of the Wild Horses (feat. Gods and Monsters) (Bonus Track)

15. Astronomy Domine (feat. Rolo McGinty) (Bonus Track)

16. Lullaby from Rosemary's Baby (feat. Anna Podolak) (Bonus Track)

x

Track List: Busy Being Born

1. Adon Olom Instr.

2. Adon Olom Vocal

3. Shekhinah

4. Sandmann

5. Sunrise Sunset

6. Tradition

7. The Mensch In The Moon

8. Lydia, The Tattooed Lady

9. Crawlspace

10. Dayenu/Dreidel

11. Fleischerei

12. A Hundred Pounds Of Clay

13. The Seven Faces Of Dr. Lao

14. Abie The Fishman

15. Hinay Ma Tov

16. Theme From Exodus

17. Adon Olom Acappella

Comments

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