No More Heroes

A few of my heroes passed away recently…

The first fond farewell is to Rudy Ray Moore aka Dolemite who died on October 19, 2008. If you are unaware of Mr Moore’s contribution to popular culture let me give you the highlights; born in 1927, first record in 1959, invented Dolemite character in the 1960s and started making Dolemite movies in the 1970s. Rudy was believed to have played a few shows with Black Randy in the late 1970s and continued on into the 1980s, 90s and 21st century doing stand-up. Rudy’s albums were a combination of funk, soul and R&B music as well as stand-up comedy. My personal favourite is Eat Out More Often from 1970..the year I was born. Anyway, Rudy lived a long life and it was time for him to move on, but goddammit if I did not feel saddened by the news regardless.

The Descendents circa Milo Goes To College

Another personal favourite of mine, the inimitable Yma Sumac, passed away on November 1, 2008. Yma was a singer from Peru who was said to be descended from an ancient race of Andean god-men. She was an amazing singer with a just incredible vocal range and with the right connections, coulda probably been an opera star of the highest order. Instead she met Les Baxter and proceeded to release a string of albums that really define the word camp. I’m not joking here. Probably her best release was the Voice of the Xtabay although Legend of the Sun Virgin is pretty good too. Actually, her mambo album is great as well.

Finally, the saddest loss of the three was probably Frank Navetta, the original guitar player from the Descendents. Frank was on the Ride the Wild 7inch, The Fat EP and most importantly, Milo Goes To College. I don’t know if it is even conceivable today to understand how important that album was to a lot of teenagers in the 1980s and Frank’s guitar playing, which was one part Greg Ginn and one part Vitus Matare, was a key component of it. After Milo Goes to College, Frank quit music altogether and moved to Oregon to become a fisherman. He died on Halloween, 2008 of unknown causes.

So hats off to all three of these fine folks.

This entry was posted in Uncategorized. Bookmark the permalink.

18 Responses to No More Heroes

  1. Rudy Ramo says:

    If you honkies don’t pay tribute to Rudy Ray Mo, he gonna come back and stomp a mudhole in yo azz!

  2. Scott says:

    We also lost one of the greatest drummers ever, Mitch Mitchell, this week.

  3. malfeitor says:

    Hadn’t heard about Yma or Frank. I think I first heard Yma on the Big Lebowski soundtrack and, like you mentioned, is there anyone who didn’t play the shit out of Milo Goes To College when it came out? It seemed like the Descendents were playing St. Louis every six months for awhile there.

  4. Ben says:

    Very sad to hear about the death of Frank Navetta. For my sins, I’ve been listening to the early Descendents stuff loads recently.

    Just did a quick tribute post on my own blog – hope you don’t mind me stealing that great photo of the band.

  5. OTTO says:

    A world without Dolemite is a sadder place….

    Hadn’t heard about Frank Navetta until you posted.. loved his guitar sound on Milo. Sad, indeed.

  6. Fuck! I did not know Rudy Ray Moore died! Very sad about this one. Wow, I knew he was old but I didn’t realize he was born in 1927. So by the time his movies came out in the 70′s he was nearly 50. His comedy albums are hilarious- I found some represses of “Eat Out More Often” and “This Pussy Belongs To Me” about 12 years back here in Chicago. My favorite line from one of his other comedy albums (name?) is “I used to be young, dumb and full of cum, but now I’m slick and pack a whole lot of dick”. One of the original rappers for sure. Out of all his movies, “The Human Tornado” is my favorite, just wild shit like when the room implodes while he’s doin his thing in bed with that lady. And just a raw DIY feel to it overall. When I ran the Chicago Marathon for the 2nd time in 2002, I ran it with a homemade shirt I made with a computerized iron on that had The Human Tornado logo on it. No one who saw me in it besides my wife caught the reference. Oh well. Regarding blaxploitation films from the 70′s, Something Weird Video put out a very cool 2 hour compilation of all trailers back in 1994 called “Afros, Macks and Zodiacs”. It’s only on VHS and out of print, but is highly recommended (and pretty cheap on eBay). The YouTube clip you posted looks like it was pulled from said compilation.

    Sad too about Frank Navetta. That early Descendents stuff is so good, especially “Milo Goes To College”.

  7. mrpoopy says:

    I failed to hear about Rudy Ray Moore, as well. Unlike the false Messiah debated in your earlier post, this man was truly a god and will be much missed. Below is a link to the A-side of “The Sensuos Black Man”–one of his best that was conspicuously absent from all those other reissues in the early 90′s. A true harbinger of hope and change that transcends racial boundaries, just as meaningful today as it was in 1970 (or whenever this thing came out):

  8. Joe says:

    Hey Mr Poopy… Saw your notes on Good Music For Bad Times about Cirith Ungol and was suprised that there was none of your “messiah” stuff over there especially considering Erich’s pre-election endorsement. What gives? Why am I so lucky?

  9. Empire Hancock says:

    I was sad to hear we’d lost one of the Descendents. Amazingly fine band. Also, Milo looks so much like the cover of Milo Goes to College in that photo it’s fucking ridiculous!

  10. Mr. Poopy,

    Thanks so much for the link to the A-side of “The Senuous Black Man” LP- I have been wanting to hear that Rudy Ray Moore record for some time.

  11. A Google search brought up the fact that’s mp3 service has a boatload of Rudy Ray Moore stuff for download (er, gotta pay tho):

  12. mrpoopy says:

    Well, Erich isn’t an American, didn’t get subjected to the brainwashing campaign, and didn’t post a big picture of the guy with the same brainwashed gushing about how wonderful it is he got elected. You gotta admit this media blitz is getting out of hand–they are now comparing him to FDR and he hasn’t even been sworn in! The guy hasn’t done a fucking thing! Enough of this shit, already! My last comment–I swear (until he starts fucking up, that is)! Did you listen to that Now 7″? Killer stuff, there! And it was put out by Armand Shaubroeck!

    @ Punk Business MGR: I actually found that record at the Reckless over on Broadway and Belmont. I was stoked and the guy at the counter said it had been sitting there for months with no takers at $20. In any other town it would have been snatched up in 24 hours! Nice to know at least one person has some taste in that city–my “wierdo” collection actually blows away my punk collection and I never met a soul with the slightest interest in it during the almost 11 years I spent in that town. On a possitive note, I picked up a lot of cool shit for pennies since no one else gave a fuck. I have other Rudy stuff similar to that LP–give me a way to contact you and we can work something out if you are interested in a file trade.

  13. David H says:

    Thanks for paying tribute to Yma – she was one of the great originals. I hate the term ‘camp’ normally, but she proved that you could be camp/kitsch/cheesy while still being mindblowing and life changing.

  14. Joe says:

    I like the term “camp”…to me it means something that is both ridiculous AND transcendent at the same time. Which is a lot of punk rock for me. As well as Yma.

    Kitsch is a little different – something banal and sentimental with no transcendent qualities. Like a Precious Moments figurine.

  15. Scott says:

    “Camp” is Lux Interior. “Kitsch” is Charo.

  16. Joe says:

    Good one…how about The Angry Samoans are camp…Youth of Today is kitsch?

  17. Mr Poopy,

    I didn’t realize you were a fellow Chicagoan. If you want to get in touch, post some sort of comment on one of my blog postings at my site and I will get in touch with you “offline” as the kids say. Cool that you found the Sensuous Black Man LP at the Broadway Reckless. My heyday of finding great stuff there, KBD and otherwise, was 96-98 but not so much nowadays. Now that I have some kids I don’t make it there that much but when I do I rarely turn up that much cool stuff unlike the “good old days”. I have gotten much more lately into finding “weirdo” non-KBD stuff and had some good finds this year on that front.

  18. james says:

    great rudy ray post, any chance of gettin side 2 from sensuous black man??

Leave a Reply