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Day: July 9, 2012

“Rock ‘n’ Roll Myths” by Gary Graff and Daniel Durchholz

“Rock ‘n’ Roll Myths” by Gary Graff and Daniel Durchholz

c.2012, Voyageur Press
$21.99 / $23.99 Canada
240 pages, includes index



It wasn’t true. It couldn’t be.

That rumor you heard about your favorite rock & roll star?  It had to be fake. It was made up. Completely untrue, you were sure of it. Mick didn’t do things like that. Sid’s mom would’ve been more careful. Gene, well, it’s not possible.

Even all these years later, you kind of wonder… what about Elvis, Michael, and Frank?  You’d really like to know, and in “Rock ‘n’ Roll Myths” by Gary Graff and Daniel Durchholz, you finally will.

Okay, so you can’t deny that rockers do weird things. They love it when fans talk about them, and the best way to start buzz is to be outrageous. But, for instance, must one become a Knight in Service to Satan to achieve that?

Apparently, no, says Graff and Durchholz. “KISS” is not an acronym and doesn’t have anything to do with the devil. Neither does Black Sabbath. And Robert Johnson?

Maybe. Probably not.

Then there’s John Lennon. He denied the rumors about Brian Epstein, but we’ll never know the truth. Led Zeppelin says it wasn’t a shark, but a snapper that the groupie snapped up. Donna Summer was not a Bad Girl in the studio. And the Jagger-and-Bowie thing?  Depends on who’s talking…

Puff and Lucy, by the way, were totally innocent of all drug charges. Unfortunately, the same can’t be said about Willie or The Beatles.

Alice Cooper claims that the chicken incident in Toronto was an accident, just like Ozzy says the bat incident was unintended. Keith Richards admitted it’s no accident that he and his dad are, um, very close. Frank Zappa didn’t eat what he’s accused of eating, but Van Halen will eat brown M&Ms (just not backstage). And it’s true that a sandwich was in the vicinity of Mama Cass’s body, but it’s possible that the ham was innocent.

There is an eerie “27 Club” that several stars have joined, unintentionally, upon their early deaths. Nobody, however, died in the making of The Ohio Players album, but Kurt Cobain and Brian Jones might’ve been murdered. Bobby McFerrin is still alive and well. So is Paul.

And Elvis?  Still dead.

Probably. Maybe…

You gotta love a good scandal, especially when it comes from the very people you expect to misbehave.  But admit it: the did-they-or-didn’t-they question has always been on your mind.

Authors Gary Graff and Daniel Durchholz have the answers to your doubts, but only more or less. That’s because, like many of the people involved, the rumors in “Rock ‘n’ Roll Myths” may never fully be laid to rest. Still, it’s delicious fun to read about admissions and denials, limp explanations, and lame reasonings behind the things you whispered about, then and now.

I liked this book for its nostalgia, its tabloid-ish feel, and for the brand-new scandals that I didn’t even know about, and I think you’ll like it, too. If you’re a rock fan, a gossip lover, or a head banger from way back, “Rock ‘n’ Roll Myths” will hit the right note.

Terri Schlichenmeyer is based in Wisconsin.

Bond amendment will save $76K


For the Keizertimes

An amendment calculated to save Keizer more than $76,000 annually was approved by the City Council on Monday.

The vote extended the terms of an agreement between the Keizer Urban Renewal Agency and Bank of America that primarily involves the construction costs of the new Keizer Civic Center. The agency consists of Mayor Lore Christopher and the council members.

Susan Gahlsdorf, Keizer finance director, reported that of the $12,260,000 borrowed, all but $2,660,000 had been repaid.  The agency had enough cash to pay the balance, she said, but the agency needed cash to help mitigate city interest costs on the Keizer Station local improvement district debt.

The LID debt carries a 5.2 percent interest rate. The interest rate on the line of credit is variable, tied to the Prime Rate, and is currently 2.3137 percent. As with the original agreement, the line of credit can be repaid ahead of schedule without penalty.

Just before the regular council meeting, the council met as the Urban Renewal Agency and approved the amendment, as it would in regular session.

In other business, Stan Hoisington, an identity theft specialist, asked the city to provide information on child identity theft. He said one out of 10 children have been victims of it.

Jerry McGee, a former Keizer councilor, urged that elected city officials not participate in an approaching fundraiser that will involve dunk tanks. He noted that there had been suggestions that councilors do so and that Christopher had referred at the June council meeting to a city decorum policy against it.

The council approved an amendment to the procedure for apportioning LID assessments, by which the public works director rather than the city engineer will submit to the council his recommendations for apportionment. Gahlsdorf said the amendment would save money. The council also approved an application fee of $225 per lot.

The council approved proclamation of July as Accessibility Awareness Month. The resolution had been presented by The Accessible Organization and Oregon Paralyzed Veterans of America.

Resolutions approved by the council were:

•Authorizing the public works director to enter into an agreement with Pacific N-Ter-Tek for pipe cleaning and television inspection.

• Establishing the Traffic Safety/Bikeways/Pedestrian Committee.

• Authorizing appropriation of excess expenditures for park bark chips.

• Granting step increases to the city manager and city attorney.

The council approved appointments of:

• Jodi McBride to the Festivals and Events Services Team.

• Hersch Sangster to the Planning Commission.

• David Louden to the Parks Advisory Board.

Police Chief H. Marc Adams announced that Brian Hunter, school resource officer at McNary High School, was retiring and being succeeded by Officer David Zavala.

Gahlsdorf said that Karen Hillier had resigned as utility billing clerk and that applications for the position were open.